The Prisms of Passing: Reading beyond the Racial Binary in Twentieth-Century U.S. Passing Narratives

Posted in Dissertations, Latino Studies, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, Passing, United States on 2018-04-30 00:40Z by Steven

The Prisms of Passing: Reading beyond the Racial Binary in Twentieth-Century U.S. Passing Narratives

University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
2011
217 pages

Amanda M. Page

A dissertation submitted to the faculty of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the Department of English and Comparative Literature.

In “The Prisms of Passing: Reading beyond the Racial Binary in Twentieth-Century U.S. Passing Narratives,” I examine a subset of racial passing narratives written between 1890 and 1930 by African American activist-authors, some directly affiliated with the NAACP, who use the form to challenge racial hierarchies through the figure of the mulatta/o and his or her interactions with other racial and ethnic groups. I position texts by Frances E.W. Harper, James Weldon Johnson, and Walter White in dialogue with racial classification laws of the period—including Supreme Court decisions, such as Plessy v. Ferguson (1896), and immigration law, such as the Johnson-Reed Act of 1924—to show how these rulings and laws were designed to consolidate white identity while preventing coalition-building among African Americans and other subordinate groups.

In contrast to white-authored passing narratives of the time, I argue that these early African American passing narratives frequently gesture toward interracial solidarity with Native American, European immigrant, Latina/o, or Asian American characters as a means of
challenging white supremacy. Yet, these authors often sacrifice the potential for antiracist coalitions because of the limitations inherent in working within the dominant racial and nativist discourses. For example, in Iola Leroy (1892), Harper, despite her racially progressive intentions, strategically deploys white nativist discourse against Native Americans to demonstrate the “Americanness” of her mulatta heroine and demand recognition of African American assimilation. Though later African American passing narratives, such as Johnson‘s The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man (1912) and White‘s Flight (1926), began to reflect a collaborative global approach to civil rights as the century progressed, these strategies of domestic antagonism and/or international solidarity with groups outside of the black-white binary ultimately worked in service to a specifically African American civil rights agenda.

This study concludes with an examination of a contemporary passing narrative by an Asian American author. Brian Ascalon Roley’s American Son (2001) revises the form to challenge the continued marginalization of Latina/os and Asian Americans and thus suggests the need for a reconsideration of how we approach civil rights activism to accommodate new racial dynamics in the post-civil rights era.

Read the entire dissertation here.

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Tie-Dyed Realities in a Monochromatic World: Deconstructing the Effects of Racial Microaggressions on Black-White Multiracial University Students

Posted in Campus Life, Dissertations, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive, United States on 2018-03-25 01:59Z by Steven

Tie-Dyed Realities in a Monochromatic World: Deconstructing the Effects of Racial Microaggressions on Black-White Multiracial University Students

Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, California
2013
431 pages
ISBN: 9781303700170

Claire Anne Touchstone

A dissertation presented to the Faculty of the School of Education, Loyola Marymount University, in partial satisfaction of the requirements for the degree Doctor of Education

Traditional policies dictate that Black-White multiracial people conform to monoracial minority status arising from Hypodescent (the “One-Drop Rule“) and White privilege. Despite some social recognition of Black-White persons as multiracial, racial microaggressions persist in daily life. Subtle racist acts (Sue, Capodilupo, Torino, Bucceri, Holder, Nadal, & Esquilin, 2007b) negatively impact multiracial identity development. Since 2007, studies have increasingly focused on the impact of racial microaggressions on particular monoracial ethnic groups. Johnston and Nadal (2010) delineated general racial microaggressions for multiracial people. This project examines the effects of racial microaggressions on the multiracial identity development of 11 part-Black multiracial university students, including the concerns and challenges they face in familial, academic, and social racial identity formation. Data were analyzed through a typological analysis and Racial and Multiracial Microaggressions typologies (Johnston & Nadal, 2010; Sue et al., 2007b). Three themes arose: (a) the external societal pressure for the multiracial person to identify monoracially; (b) the internalized struggle within the mixed-race person to create a cohesive self-identity; and (c) the assertion of a multiracial identity. Participants experienced Racial Microaggressions (Sue, 2010a; Sue et al., 2007b), Multiracial Microaggressions (Johnston & Nadal, 2010), and Monoracial Stereotypes (Nadal, Wong, Griffin, Sriken, Vargas, Wideman, & Kolawole, 2011). Implications included encouraging a multiracial identity, educating the school community, and eliminating racial microaggressions and stereotypes.

Read the entire dissertation here.

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The Matrix of Race: Social Construction, Intersectionality, and Inequality

Posted in Books, Dissertations, Health/Medicine/Genetics, History, Latino Studies, Law, Media Archive, Monographs, Social Science, Teaching Resources, United States on 2017-11-13 02:58Z by Steven

The Matrix of Race: Social Construction, Intersectionality, and Inequality

SAGE Publishing
October 2017
480 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1452202693

Rodney D. Coates, Professor of Global and Intercultural Studies
Miami University, Oxford, Ohio

Abby L. Ferber, Professor of Sociology
University of Colorado, Colorado Springs

David L. Brunsma, Professor of Sociology
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Virginia

The Matrix of Race: Social Construction, Intersectionality, and Inequality is a textbook that makes race and racial inequality “visible” in new ways to all students in race/ethnic relations courses, regardless of their backgrounds–from minorities who have experienced the impact of race in their own lives to members of dominant groups who might believe that we now live in a “color blind” society. The “matrix” refers to a way of thinking about race that reflects the intersecting, multilayered identities of contemporary society, and the powerful social institutions that shape our understanding of race. Its goals are to help readers get beyond familiar “us vs. them” arguments that can lead to resistance and hostility; promote self-appraisal; and stimulate more productive discussions about race and racism.

Contents

  • PREFACE
  • ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
  • ABOUT THE AUTHORS
  • PART I. INTRODUCTION TO RACE AND THE SOCIAL MATRIX
    • Chapter 1. Race and the Social Construction of Difference
      • The Social Construction of Race
      • The Social Matrix of Race
      • The Operation of Racism
      • Our Stories
      • Key Terms
      • Chapter Summary
    • Chapter 2. The Shaping of a Nation: The Social Construction of Race in America
      • Race Today: Adapting and Evolving
      • Indigenous Peoples: The Americas before Columbus
      • Discovery and Encounters: The Shaping of Our Storied Past
      • The U.S. Matrix and Intersectionality— Where Do We Go from Here?
      • Key Terms
      • Chapter Summary
  • PART II. THE MATRIX PERSPECTIVE ON SOCIAL INSTITUTIONS
    • Chapter 3. The Social Construction and Regulation of Families
      • Historical Regulation of the Family
      • Family Inequality Theories
      • Family Inequality through the Matrix Lens
      • Transforming the Ideal Family Narrative
      • Key Terms
      • Chapter Summary
    • Chapter 4. Work and Wealth Inequality
      • Recent Trends in Work and Wealth
      • Theories of Economic Inequality
      • Applying the Matrix to the History of Economic Inequality in the United States
      • Transforming the Story of Race and Economic Inequality
      • Key Terms
      • Chapter Summary
    • Chapter 5. Health, Medicine, and Health Care
      • Patterns of Inequality in Health and Health Care
      • Theorizing Inequality in Health and Health Care
      • Applying the Matrix to Health Inequity and Inequality
      • Resisting and Transforming Inequality in Health and Health Care
      • Key Terms
      • Chapter Summary
    • Chapter 6. Education
      • The Shaping of the Matrix of U.S. Education
      • Theories of Education
      • Examining the Concealed Story of Race and Education through the Matrix
      • Alternative Educational Movements and the Future of Education
      • Key Terms
      • Chapter Summary
    • Chapter 7. Crime, Law, and Deviance
      • A History of Race, Crime, and Punishment
      • Sociological Stock Theories of Crime and Deviance
      • Applying the Matrix to Crime and Deviance
      • Transforming the Narrative of Race, Crime, and Deviance
      • Key Terms
      • Chapter Summary
    • Chapter 8. Power, Politics, and Identities
      • Contemporary Political Identities
      • Critiquing Sociological Theories of Power, Politics, and Identity
      • Applying the Matrix of Race to U.S. Political History
      • Building Alternatives to the Matrix of Race and Politics
      • Key Terms
      • Chapter Summary
    • Chapter 9. Sports and the American Dream
      • The State of Sport Today
      • Examining Stock Sociological Theories of Sport
      • Applying the Matrix to Sports in the United States
      • Creating a New Playing Field
      • Key Terms
      • Chapter Summary
    • Chapter 10. The Military, War, and Terrorism
      • Class, Gender, and Race in the U.S. Military
      • Military Sociology Stock Theories
      • Applying the Matrix Approach to U.S. Military History, War, and Terrorism
      • A More Inclusive Future
      • Key Terms
      • Chapter Summary
    • Conclusion
  • GLOSSARY
  • REFERENCES
  • INDEX
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Passing: Intersections of Race, Gender, Sexuality and Class

Posted in Dissertations, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, Passing, United States on 2017-08-02 00:19Z by Steven

Passing: Intersections of Race, Gender, Sexuality and Class

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
2017-07-17
379 pages

Dana Christine Volk

Dissertation submitted to the faculty of the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy In ASPECT: Alliance for Social, Political, Ethical, and Cultural Thought

African American Literature in the 20th century engaged many social and racial issues that mainstream white America marginalized during the pre-civil rights era through the use of rhetoric, setting, plot, narrative, and characterization. The use of passing fostered an outlet for many light-skinned men and women for inclusion. This trope also allowed for a closer investigation of the racial division in the United States during the 20th century. These issues included questions of the color line, or more specifically, how light-skinned men and women passed as white to obtain elevated economic and social status. Secondary issues in these earlier passing novels included gender and sexuality, raising questions as to whether these too existed as fixed identities in society. As such, the phenomenon of passing illustrates not just issues associated with the color line, but also social, economic, and gender structure within society. Human beings exist in a matrix, and as such, passing is not plausible if viewed solely as a process occurring within only one of these social constructs, but, rather, insists upon a viewpoint of an intersectional construct of social fluidity itself. This paper will re-theorize passing from a description solely concerning racial movements into a theory that explores passing as an intersectional understanding of gender, sexuality, race, and class. This paper will focus on contemporary cultural products (e.g., novels) of passing that challenge the traditional notion of passing and focus on an intersectional linkage between race, gender, sexuality, and class.

Read the entire dissertation here.

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Mixed Signals: Examining Ethnic Affirmation as a Factor in the Discrimination-Depression Relationship with Multiracial and Monoracial Minority Adolescent Girls

Posted in Dissertations, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive, United States, Women on 2017-07-11 02:04Z by Steven

Mixed Signals: Examining Ethnic Affirmation as a Factor in the Discrimination-Depression Relationship with Multiracial and Monoracial Minority Adolescent Girls

University of Connecticut
2017-02-15
62 pages

Linda A. Oshin

A Thesis Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science

Multiracial adolescents are a growing segment of our population, but not much is known about their ethnic-racial identity development. The current study examined ethnic affirmation, a dimension of ethnic-racial identity, and race socialization and their influence in the relationship between perceived group discrimination and depressive symptoms among multiracial (n = 42) and monoracial minority Black (n = 29) and Latina (n = 95) adolescents (M=15.4 years). Results showed that there were no mean differences between multiracial and monoracial adolescents in ethnic affirmation, maternal race/ethnic socialization, or depressive symptoms. Multiracial adolescents reported significantly less perceived discrimination. There was also evidence that the indirect effect of perceived discrimination on depressive symptoms via ethnic affirmation differed between multiracial and monoracial adolescents. Implications of these results for treatment and research are discussed.

Read the entire thesis here.

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The Discourse of Konketsuji: Racialized Representations of Biracial Japanese Children in the 1950s

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Communications/Media Studies, Dissertations, History, Media Archive on 2017-07-11 00:23Z by Steven

The Discourse of Konketsuji: Racialized Representations of Biracial Japanese Children in the 1950s

University of Toronto
March 2017
79 pages

Zachery Anthony Nelson

A thesis submitted in conformity with the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts, Department of East Asian Studies University of Toronto

This study examines textual representations of biracial Japanese children as featured in the print media of 1950s Japan. Attention is paid to the complex discursive process of racialization that produced knowledge of biracial Japanese under the label konketsuji or “mixed-blood child.” This “discourse of konketsuji” is deconstructed and analyzed towards the aim of illustrating how it functioned to disassociate the figure of the konketsuji from the category of “Japanese.” This study situates konketsuji and Japanese racial identity discourse into their proper historical contexts before transitioning to an analysis of primary source material. The discourse of konketsuji is revealed as having racialized konketsuji in a plural and complex manner. Racializing statements about konketsuji referenced difference in phenotype, social origin, political potential, birth circumstances, mentality, intellect, and cultural proclivities so as to position biracial children as a group outside a normative construction of Japanese raciality.

Read the entire thesis here.

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Embodying the Oppressed and the Oppressor: Critical Mixed Race Studies for Liberation and Social Justice Education

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Dissertations, Media Archive, Social Justice, Teaching Resources, United States on 2017-05-03 02:21Z by Steven

Embodying the Oppressed and the Oppressor: Critical Mixed Race Studies for Liberation and Social Justice Education

University of San Francisco
April 2017
71 pages

Gwendlyn C. Snider

A Thesis Presented to The Faculty of the School of Education International and Multicultural Education Department In Partial Fulfillment Of the Requirements for the Degree Master of Arts in International and Multicultural Education

This study will focus on the educational and social experiences of mixed race Filipinx PEP (Pin@y Educational Partnerships) instructors in the San Francisco/Bay Area and the connection of these various, lived experiences to their teaching pedagogy and praxis in Ethnic Studies curriculum. The main purpose of this research is to create additional evidence for the need of critical mixed race studies and acknowledgement of mixed race students’ unique experiences to be valued and included in Ethnic Studies curriculum. In addition, the research will also serve as reaffirmation of not only the efficacy of Ethnic Studies curriculum but also the need for Ethnic Studies at a national and global level for every student regardless of race or cultural background. This research will also examine the ways in which knowing ourselves in connection to our personal histories, ethnicities, and traditions can not only create a stronger sense of identity but also provide the transformation needed for social justice education and activism. When an individual is able to self-actualize and evolve through education, decolonization, and identity formation, they are potentially in a space where they can utilize this knowledge through education and social justice initiatives to teach youth along with connecting and contributing to their local communities.

By conducting detailed qualitative interviews with mixed race PEP teachers, I aim to further reconcile what it means to be a mixed race Filipinx individual specifically teaching Filipinx history and culture in connection to the larger conceptualization of mixed race identity being integrated into Ethnic Studies curriculum. Through the various experiences of PEP instructors, what does it mean to be a mixed race PEP teacher, teaching Filipinx history while grappling with their own identify formation, and how does that play a role into how they teach? Because of the complex nature of mixed race individual experiences, research suggests that mixed race experiences are not yet fully captured by the existing critical theories because a majority of these theories cater to monoracial identities and realities. This study aims to disrupt and dispel stereotypical notions of race, recognize the lived experiences of mixed race individuals, and push forward Ethnic Studies curriculum for all students at all levels.

Read the entire thesis here.

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Japan Reborn: Mixed-Race Children, Eugenic Nationalism, and the Politics of Sex after World War II

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Dissertations, History, Media Archive, United States on 2017-04-06 01:29Z by Steven

Japan Reborn: Mixed-Race Children, Eugenic Nationalism, and the Politics of Sex after World War II

Columbia University
2015
DOI: 10.7916/D83F4NS4

Kristin A. Roebuck, ‎Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in History
Cornell University, Ithaca, New York

In April 1952, Japan emerged from Allied occupation free, peaceful, and democratic.

Japan’s presses marked the occasion by declaring a state of crisis: the “konketsuji [mixed-blood children] crisis.” By all accounts, Allied soldiers had sired and abandoned two hundred thousand “mixed-blood” orphans in Japan. However, Chapter One reveals this to be a fabricated crisis or “moral panic.” Surveys found only a few thousand konketsuji nationwide, very few of them orphans. Yet these discoveries did little to change the tenor of “crisis.” Opposition politicians deployed wrath and fear over “blood mixing” to discredit the dominant Liberal Party and its alliance with the United States. They were abetted by an array of postwar activists who used the “crisis” to reconstruct Japanese nationalism, laid low by defeat and occupation, on a new basis: the “pure” race rather than the failed state.

Chapter Two explores how the panic over “blood mixing” inevitably embroiled not just children but women as well. Japanese women were subject to intense pressures to eschew sex and family formation with Western men, and to abort “mixed” fetuses on eugenic grounds rather than bear them to term. 1948 marked the beginning of the end of criminal prosecution of abortion in Japan. The law that inaugurated this shift, the Eugenic Protection Law (EPL), is generally viewed as an advancement in women’s rights, despite the fact that the EPL envisioned and promoted the use of abortion as a means of managing the “quality and quantity” of Japan’s population.

Scholarship on the links between eugenics and the decriminalization of abortion in Japan is vast, but scholars have yet to probe deeply into how eugenic abortion was applied to control—or forestall—“race mixing” after the war. Although it was politically impossible for the government to impose abortions outright on women who might be pregnant with the children of Japan’s conquerors, such women were nonetheless targeted for eugenic intervention. For these women, abortion was not an option granted in a liberal democracy concerned with women’s rights. Abortion was an imperative imposed by a diverse array of governmental and non-governmental actors united behind an ideology of “pure blood.”

Chapter Three explains how postwar scientific presses framed konketsuji born in the wake of World War II as an unprecedented presence. Geneticists, physical anthropologists, clinicians, and other researchers from the late 1940s through the 1970s deployed a “system of silences” to erase Japan’s prewar konketsuji community from view. They thereby not only constructed the Japanese as a racial community bounded by “pure blood,” but denied that the racialized nation ever had or ever could assimilate foreign elements. Scientific spokesmen effected the discursive purification of Japan despite resistance from “mixed-blood” adults who organized to contest the rising tide of racial nationalism. In the process, these scientists severely undercut the “mixed” community’s advocacy of a civically rather than biologically constituted nation.

Chapter Four contrasts the decline of race science and eugenics in the West with their efflorescence in postwar Japan, where conditions of occupation heightened the relevance of racial eugenics as a prescription for national unity and strength. It is well known that Anglophone genetics and physical anthropology were led at the mid-century by immigrants and minorities, prominently including Theodosius Dobzhansky and Ashley Montagu. Yet without comparative analysis, it is difficult to weigh the significance of this fact, or of the fact that minorities did not lead the Japanese sciences. Japanese geneticists and anthropologists who identified as having “pure Japanese blood” never questioned that biopolitical category or the costs it imposed on those it excluded.

I argue that who practiced science counts for much more than is allowed by objectivist narratives of self-correcting scientific “progress.” My project explains for the first time why racial nationalism and an ethos of ethnic cleansing triumphed in Japan at the very moment these forces receded in other contexts.

Embargoed until 2017-06-30.

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Memories of race: representations of mixed race people in girls’ comic magazines in post-occupation Japan

Posted in Asian Diaspora, Dissertations, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, United States, Women on 2017-03-14 23:18Z by Steven

Memories of race: representations of mixed race people in girls’ comic magazines in post-occupation Japan

Sayuri Arai

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
2016-11-30

As the number of mixed race people grows in Japan, anxieties about miscegenation in today’s context of intensified globalization continue to increase. Indeed, the multiracial reality has recently gotten attention and led to heightened discussions surrounding it in Japanese society, specifically, in the media. Despite the fact that race mixing is not a new phenomenon even in “homogeneous” Japan, where the presence of multiracial people has challenged the prevailing notion of Japaneseness, racially mixed people have been a largely neglected group in both scholarly literature and in wider Japanese society.

My dissertation project offers a remedy for this absence by focusing on representations of mixed race people in postwar Japanese popular culture. During and after the U.S. Occupation of Japan (1945-1952), significant numbers of racially mixed children were born of relationships between Japanese women and American servicemen. American-Japanese mixed race children, as products of the occupation, reminded the Japanese of their war defeat. Miscegenation and mixed race people came to be problematized in the immediate postwar years.

In the 1960s, when Japan experienced the postwar economic miracle and redefined itself as a great power, mixed race Japanese entertainers (e.g., models, actors, and singers) became popular. This popularity of multiracial entertainers created a konketsuji boom (mixed-blood boom) in Japanese media and popular culture. As such, the images and stereotypes of racially mixed people shifted considerably from the 1950s into the 1970s.

Through a close textual analysis of representations of mixed race stars and characters in major Japanese girls’ comic magazines published during the 1950s and 1960s, my dissertation illuminates the ways in which the meanings of mixed race people shifted from strongly negative to ambivalent, or even positive, in the context of postwar economic growth. Closely looking at the changing U.S.-Japan relations in the aftermath of World War II and in the Cold War context, this project provides insight into the ways in which memories of World War II and of the U.S. Occupation are reconstructed through representations of mixed race people in Japanese media and popular culture in postwar Japan.

As this dissertation project suggests, girls’ comic magazines are one of the few pivotal spaces where issues of race mixing in postwar Japan are allowed to be openly and regularly discussed, and where a wide range of multiracial people are portrayed in imaginative ways. As I argue, in the early post-occupation years, the overrepresentation of Black-Japanese occupation babies in girls’ comic magazines inadvertently contributed to foisting the blame of the former Western Occupation onto Black bodies and to reconstructing the image of the West.

Subsequently, during the 1960s, the whiteness of mixed race stars and characters, glorified in consumerist media culture, greatly contributed to overshadowing the image of the West as the former enemy and to dissociating racially mixed people from the stigma of being “occupation babies,” intimately entangled with the memory of Japan’s defeat in World War II.

My dissertation demonstrates that representations of racially mixed people in girls’ comic magazines played a crucial role in remaking the meanings of mixed race Japanese and reconstructing memories of World War II and the U.S. Occupation, in part because girls’ comic magazines have elaborated a distinct aesthetics, ethics, and worldview shaped within girls’ culture.

Login to read the dissertation here.

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Who Needs Hybridity? The Political Limits of Mixed Race Identity

Posted in Canada, Dissertations, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive on 2017-03-07 21:12Z by Steven

Who Needs Hybridity? The Political Limits of Mixed Race Identity

University of Toronto
November 2016
153 pages

Emily Alanna Moorhouse

A thesis submitted in conformity with the requirements for the degree of Masters of Arts Department of Social Justice Education Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

This thesis examines how non-white, mixed race women with Asian heritage understand, participate in, and resist colonialism, anti-blackness and anti-Indigeneity. The study finds that mixed race identification is contextual and shifts according to the racial make-up of spaces. Participants performed their identities in white spaces differently than in communities of colour. Although all participants could name whiteness, their awareness of the racial and colonial basis of citizenship was situated on a spectrum. The thesis explores how race is understood through multiple axes of identity such as disability, gender, and sexuality. Although the family is often a good space to learn about race, multiracial families sometimes reproduced ableism, queer-phobia, anti-blackness and shadism. Lastly, I focus on how hybridity is a sexualized discourse that contributes to the fetishization of multiraciality. I highlight the sexualized forms of violence that multiracial women encounter.

Read the entire thesis here.

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