Black With (Some) White Privilege

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Family/Parenting, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2018-02-11 06:08Z by Steven

Black With (Some) White Privilege

Sunday Review
The New York Times
2018-02-10

Anna Holmes, Editorial Director
Topic.com


Credit Illustration by Anthony Gerace; Photographs by SensorSpot, via Getty Images

When I was in my early 30s, I started making a list of every child I could think of who had a black parent and a white parent and was born between 1960 and the mid- to late 1980s. It was a collection of people like me, who grew up and came of age after the Supreme Court decision in 1967 that overturned the laws in more than a dozen states that outlawed interracial marriage.

I was thinking of people I knew or had heard of, so of course the list included actors like Tracee Ellis Ross (born 1972) and Rashida Jones (1976); athletes like Derek Jeter (1974) and Jason Kidd (1973); singers like Mariah Carey (1969) and Alicia Keys (1981); and, eventually, politicians and public servants like Adrian Fenty (1970) and Ben Jealous (1973).

It occurred to me, looking at the names I’d gathered, that what I was making was not just a snapshot of a particular generation but an accounting of some of the most notable, successful, widely recognized black people in American public life — cultural, political, intellectual, academic, athletic.

It made sense: The people I could think of were the people who were the most publicly visible. But what did it mean about race and opportunity in the United States that many of the most celebrated black people in American cultural life in the late 20th and early 21st centuries happened to have been born to one white parent? What if my and my cohort’s achievements as African-Americans, especially in fields to which we historically had little access, were more about how we benefited from having one white parent in a racist society than our hard work?…

…Of course, to be a black American is to be, by definition, mixed: According to a study released in 2014, 24 percent of the genetic makeup of self-identified African-Americans is of European origin. Colorism, which places black people in an uncodified but nevertheless very real hierarchy, with the lighter-skinned among us at the top, was a fact of American life long before Loving v. Virginia. Light-skinned black Americans, even those with two black parents, have, for centuries, been considered to be closer to white people, closer to white ideals about, well, most everything…

Read the entire article here.

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The Conversation I’ve Been Dreading: Ijeoma Oluo Talks About Race with Her Mom

Posted in Articles, Autobiography, Family/Parenting, Media Archive, Social Justice, United States on 2018-01-28 03:17Z by Steven

The Conversation I’ve Been Dreading: Ijeoma Oluo Talks About Race with Her Mom

Literary Hub
2018-01-17

Ijeoma Oluo

‘At this point I’m regretting the invention of the telephone.’

From So You Want To Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo.

When my white mother gave birth to me, and later my brother, in Denton, Texas, she became the subject of a lot of racial commentary in her conservative southern community. But surprisingly, my mother and I had our first really substantive conversation about race late in my life, when I was 34 years old. I was well into my career in writing about culture and social justice and my opinions and identity around race were pretty well documented by then. But the truth is, like many families, our conversations growing up mostly revolved around homework, TV shows, and chores.

While I was growing up, my mother had given the obligatory speeches that all parents of black children must give: don’t challenge cops, don’t be surprised if you are followed at stores, some people will be mean to you because of your beautiful brown skin, no you can’t have the same hairstyle as your friends because your hair doesn’t do that. But those conversations were one-offs that ceased to be necessary once we were old enough to see the reality of race for ourselves.

Having a white mother, my siblings and I likely had even fewer conversations about race than black children raised by black parents, because there was a lot about our lives that our mother’s whiteness made it hard for her to see. My mother loved our blackness as much as was possible for any nonblack person to do, she loved our brown skin, our kinky hair, our full lips, our culture, and our history. She thought we were beauty incarnate…

Read the entire article here.

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On Growing Up Mexican Italian American

Posted in Articles, Autobiography, Family/Parenting, Identity Development/Psychology, Latino Studies, Media Archive, United States on 2018-01-22 02:33Z by Steven

On Growing Up Mexican Italian American

the Parent Voice
2018-01-08

Gino Pellegrini

I became aware of the world around me during the Reagan era in a middle-class, conservative, predominantly white suburb of Los Angeles.

Growing up Mexican Italian American in this context was difficult and dissonant for me. If I had grown up in a different place or class, my mixed experience might have been very different, but then I would not have this story to tell…

Read the entire article here.

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Let’s Talk About Whiteness

Posted in Audio, Family/Parenting, Interviews, Media Archive, Social Justice, United States on 2017-12-26 22:53Z by Steven

Let’s Talk About Whiteness

On Being
2017-01-19

Krista Tippett, Host/Executive Producer

Eula Biss, Professor of Instruction
Department of English
Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois


Image by Ann Hamilton

Could we learn to talk about whiteness? The writer Eula Biss has been thinking and writing about being white and raising white children in a multi-racial world for a long time. She helpfully opens up words and ideas like “complacence,” “guilt,” and something related to privilege called “opportunity hoarding.” To be in this uncomfortable conversation is to realize how these words alone, taken seriously, can shake us up in necessary ways — but also how the limits of words make these conversations at once more messy and more urgent.

Listen to the interview (00:51:21) here. Download the interview here. Read the transcript here.

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How my mother’s fanatical views tore us apart

Posted in Articles, Autobiography, Family/Parenting, Media Archive, United States, Women on 2017-11-28 04:41Z by Steven

How my mother’s fanatical views tore us apart

The Daily Mail
2008-05-23

Rebecca Walker


Maternal rift: Rebecca Walker, whose mother was the feminist author of The Color Purple – who thought motherhood a form of servitude, is now proud to be a mother herself

She’s revered as a trail-blazing feminist and author Alice Walker touched the lives of a generation of women. A champion of women’s rights, she has always argued that motherhood is a form of servitude. But one woman didn’t buy in to Alice’s beliefs – her daughter, Rebecca, 38.

Here the writer describes what it was like to grow up as the daughter of a cultural icon, and why she feels so blessed to be the sort of woman 64-year-old Alice despises – a mother.

Read the entire article here.

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ASU student explores how parents in multi-racial families communicate about race

Posted in Articles, Family/Parenting, Identity Development/Psychology, Social Work, United States on 2017-11-27 00:34Z by Steven

ASU student explores how parents in multi-racial families communicate about race

ASU Now
Arizona State University
2017-10-27


ASU doctoral student Annabelle Atkin

It’s First Friday at the Children’s Museum in Phoenix, Arizona. Amid the kids exploring giant bubbles, a kiddie car wash, and a paint maze, there is an 8×4 folding table with a red tablecloth draped over it. Behind the table sits the smiling face of Annabelle Atkin, a doctoral student at the T. Denny Sanford School of Social and Family Dynamics at Arizona State University. An assortment of children’s books featuring characters with diverse racial backgrounds is spread before her. To her right is a colorful poster describing her multiracial families project.

Atkin is working on recruiting multi-racial families for her research. She is exploring how parents of multi-racial families communicate with their children about race, as well as the effects those conversations have on their children’s racial identity and development. Her excitement and interest in this topic shines through when she talks about the families she’s met so far…

Read the entire article here.

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Dr. Patton to speak in Germany

Posted in Articles, Europe, Family/Parenting, Media Archive on 2017-11-16 21:47Z by Steven

Dr. Patton to speak in Germany

Branding Iron: The UW Student Newspaper Online
2017-11-15

Courtney Kudera


(Photo courtesy of Dr. Tracey Patton) A picture of Dr. Tracey Patton standing on the UW campus.

Designing Modern Families: International Perspectives of Intercountry and Transracial Adoptions; this is the conference UW professor, Dr. Tracey Patton, has been asked to speak at in Germany beginning Friday, Nov. 17.

Patton is the co-author, in coordination with Sally Schedlock, of the work “Gender, Whiteness & Power in Rodeo: Breaking Away from the Ties of Sexism & Racism.” Patton is also a professor of communication here at UW.

…Patton commented on her own history in relation to the conferences’ topic. She has familial experience on the topic at hand.

As a first generation American on her mother’s side, Patton described her German heritage and the involvement in interracial and international adoptions, which affected up to 5,000 German children born during or after WWII.

From here, her research has had a national and transnational focus, working on the particular topic of interracial coupling and mixed-race children after WWII…

Read the entire article here.

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Worried about racism’s impact on her biracial son, a mother looks at home schooling

Posted in Articles, Campus Life, Family/Parenting, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive, United States on 2017-11-12 19:51Z by Steven

Worried about racism’s impact on her biracial son, a mother looks at home schooling

The Washington Post Magazine
2017-11-09

Tracy Jan, Reporter


Tracy Jan, a reporter for The Washington Post, and her husband, Gerald Taylor, a former history teacher, with son Langston. (André Chung/For The Washington Post)

The declaration came emphatically, out of nowhere — dropped between sudsing his hair and rinsing out the shampoo with a plastic yellow duck full of water. “I’m not black,” my then 4-year-old son announced, while playing with his superhero figurines in the tub.

I assured him that not only was he black, because his daddy is black, but that he was also Chinese, like me. He wrinkled his nose and shook his head at this reality check. I was just as confused — where was all this coming from?

“If you’re not black and you’re not Chinese, what are you?” I asked, hoping he would not say “white.”

“I’m just Langston,” he answered…

Read the entire article here.

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Multiracial Parents: Mixed Families, Generational Change, and the Future of Race

Posted in Books, Family/Parenting, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive, Monographs, Social Science, United Kingdom, United States on 2017-11-09 03:18Z by Steven

Multiracial Parents: Mixed Families, Generational Change, and the Future of Race

New York University Press
November 2017
192 pages
2 tables and 1 figure
Cloth ISBN: 9781479840540
Paper ISBN: 9781479825905

Miri Song, Professor of Sociology
University of Kent

The views and experiences of multiracial people as parents

The world’s multiracial population is considered to be one of the fastest growing of all ethnic groups. In the United States alone, it is estimated that over 20% of the population will be considered “mixed race” by 2050. Public figures—such as former President Barack Obama and Hollywood actress Ruth Negga—further highlight the highly diverse backgrounds of those classified under the umbrella term of “multiracial.”

Multiracial Parents considers how mixed-race parents identify with and draw from their cultural backgrounds in raising and socializing their children. Miri Song presents a groundbreaking examination of how the meanings and practices surrounding multiracial identification are passed down through the generations.

A revealing portrait of how multiracial identity is and is not transmitted to children, Multiracial Parents focuses on couples comprised of one White and one non-white minority, who were mostly “first generation mixed,” situating her findings in a trans-Atlantic framework.

By drawing on detailed narratives about the parents’ children and family lives, this book explores what it means to be multiracial, and whether multiracial identity and status will matter for multiracial people’s children. Many couples suggested that their very existence (and their children’s) is a step toward breaking down boundaries about the meaning of race and that the idea of a mixed-race population is increasingly becoming normalized, despite existing concerns about racism and racial bias within and beyond various communities.

A critical perspective on contemporary multiracial families, Multiracial Parents raises fundamental questions about the future significance of racial boundaries and identities.

Table Contents

  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction: Mixed People and ‘Mixing’ in Today’s Britain
  • 1. Multiracial People as Parents
  • 2. How Do Multiracial People Identify Their Children?
  • 3. The Parenting Practices of Multiracial People
  • 4. Multiracial People, Their Children, and Racism
  • 5. The Future: ‘Dilution’ and Social Change?
  • Conclusion: A Generational Tipping Point?
  • Appendix: Participants
  • Notes
  • References
  • Index
  • About the Author
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White Supremacy Has a Deep Impact on Interracial Families

Posted in Articles, Family/Parenting, Media Archive on 2017-11-07 23:02Z by Steven

White Supremacy Has a Deep Impact on Interracial Families

Wear Your Voice: Intersectional Feminist Media
2017-11-04

Savannah Lee-Thomas
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

For interracial Black and white families, honest discussions about racism need to be had in a white supremacist world.

While I recognize that we are all the same species, due to pigmentation and a white supremacist culture, some of us are treated differently than others, and some of us are treated unfairly. In the ninth grade, our class read ‘To Kill A Mockingbird’ and I remember reading that the children of a mixed couple were considered nothings. Non existent.

As a mixed child, I had to stomach that that situation would have been a reality for me during that time. With a West Indian mother and a White father, I grew up knowing that I was mixed but never understanding.I didn’t understand why I was bullied for no reason or not liked by my teachers. I didn’t understand why dolls didn’t look like me or why I didn’t see myself on television.

And then, there was my family. I was brought up under the impression that we are all the same. I was never taught about Trinidadian culture or tradition and lived with a father who had spent his entire life in a small suburban town outside of the city. There was no access to my culture and I was never taught about it in school. Because of this, I had an extremely difficult time connecting with others and getting to know myself as an individual…

Read the entire article here.

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