|Articles, Census/Demographics, Media Archive, Social Science, United Kingdom on 2014-07-06 16:47Z by Steven|
The Guardian/The Observer
Anushka Asthana, Political Correspondent
In Britain, there are ever more ‘mixed’ marriages such as mine. And society is enriched by this trend
A friend tells me her mother is “fully Chinese”, while her father is slightly Spanish, a little Iraqi and “a lot” Jewish. “I tick ‘mixed other’,” she adds, laughing. Throw “white British” into the mix and you have her daughter, whom she and her husband lovingly describe as “the mongrel”.
As ethnicity winds its way down the generations, it creates a complicated yet wonderfully interesting web. Data from the Office for National Statistics suggests we can expect many more of these melting-pot families. Almost one in 10 Britons now lives with a spouse or partner from a different ethnic group.
When you dig deep into this fresh haul of figures, you happen across lovely details that pose fascinating questions about the psychology and sociology of love. Why is it that Chinese women are twice as likely as their male counterparts to be in inter-ethnic relationships (39% to 20%)? Or why is it Arab men – more than women – who will look a little further for love (43% to 26%)?
Overall, there are vast differences between ethnic groups when it comes to the ease with which they will cross cultural boundaries in search of romance. The most conservative are the “white British”, “Bangladeshi” and “Pakistani” (4%, 7% and 9% respectively). Yet more than one in five “Africans” are falling for partners from different backgrounds, rising to more than four in 10 for “Caribbeans” and six in 10 for “other Black”.
As for my friend – frankly, she would probably struggle to find anyone other than her sister with the exact same cultural mix. Still, it’s interesting that the single most outward looking group is that of “mixed-race” people themselves, with 84% crossing an ethnic divide to form a long-term relationship. So other than giving us all a warm glow inside, why does any of this matter?…
Read the entire article here.