Diversity reaches new levels in Honey Maid ads

Posted in Articles, Communications/Media Studies, Gay & Lesbian, Media Archive, United States on 2014-03-11 22:48Z by Steven

Diversity reaches new levels in Honey Maid ads

USA Today

Bruce Horovitz, Marketing Reporter

Honey Maid is the latest brand to launch an ad campaign featuring interracial, gay families.  USA TODAY

America’s biggest brands are at an advertising crossroads, and the new diversity that their ads project has suddenly emerged as one of society’s most visual — if not incendiary — flash points.

And it’s about to explode.

It began with several recent, high-profile diverse TV spots from two multibillion-dollar brands: a Cheerios spot staring a biracial girl with white mom and black dad; and a Coca-Cola spot featuring minorities singing America the Beautiful in their native languages. Both went viral and left trails of social media venom in their wake.

On Monday, Honey Maid will jump on the diversity bandwagon with a far-reaching campaign by the 90-year-old graham cracker brand that raises the use of diversity in mainstream ads to a whole new level.

In one 30-second Honey Maid ad, viewers will see everything from a same-sex couple bottle-feeding their son to an interracial couple and their three kids holding hands. The ad also features a Hispanic mother and an African-American father with their three mixed-race children. And there’s even a father covered in body tattoos. This is not some shockvertisement for Benetton. It’s an ad for one of America’s oldest and most familiar brands. The people in it are not actors, but real families. The message of the ad: These are wholesome families enjoying wholesome snacks…

Read the entire article here.

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The Journal of Critical Mixed Race Studies inaugural issue is now available

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, Book/Video Reviews, Caribbean/Latin America, Communications/Media Studies, History, Latino Studies, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, Mexico, My Articles/Point of View/Activities, Philosophy, Social Science, United States on 2014-03-11 22:18Z by Steven

The Journal of Critical Mixed Race Studies inaugural issue is now available

Journal of Critical Mixed Race Studies
Volume 1, Number 1 (2014-01-30)
ISSN: 2325-4521

Laura Kina, Associate Professor Art, Media and Design and Director Asian American Studies
DePaul University, Chicago, Illinois

G. Reginald Daniel, Professor of Sociology
University of California at Santa Barbaral

Saya Woolfalk, video still from “The Emphathics,” 2012.

The Journal of Critical Mixed Race Studies inaugural issue is now available. Volume 1, No. 1, 2014 “Emerging Paradigms in Critical Mixed Race Studies” It has been a long journey from the publication of Maria Root’s groundbreaking and award-winning anthology Mixed People in America (1992) to the inauguration of the Journal of Critical Mixed Race Studies. We would like to thank all of our contributors, volunteers, and editorial review board for their hard work and patience. We hope you enjoy this issue of the journal and find it an informative resource on the topic of mixed race identities and experiences.

G. Reginald Daniel, Editor in Chief

Laura Kina, Managing Editor

The Journal of Critical Mixed Race Studies (JCMRS) is a peer-reviewed online journal dedicated to Critical Mixed Race Studies (CMRS). Launched in 2011, it is the first academic journal explicitly focused on Critical Mixed Race Studies. Sponsored by UC Santa Barbara’s Sociology Department, JCMRS is hosted on the eScholarship Repository, which is part of the eScholarship initiative of the California Digital Library.

Table of Contents

  • Front Matter
  • Cover Art
  • Table of Contents
  • Editor’s Note / Daniel, G. Reginald
  • Emerging Paradigms in Critical Mixed Race Studies / Daniel, G. Reginald; Kina, Laura; Dariotis, Wei Ming; Fojas, Camilla
  • Appendix A: Publications from 1989 to 2004 / Riley, Steven F.
  • Appendix B: Publications from 2005 to 2013 / Riley, Steven F.


  • “Historical Origins of the One-Drop Racial Rule in the United States” / Jordan, Winthrop D. (Edited by Spickard, Paul)
  • “Reconsidering the Relationship Between New Mestizaje and New Multiraciality as Mixed-Race Identity Models / Turner, Jessie D.
  • “Critical Mixed Race Studies: New Directions in the Politics of Race and Representation / Jolivétte, Andrew J.
  • “‘Only the News They Want to Print’: Mainstream Media and Critical Mixed-Race Studies” / Spencer, Rainier
  • “The Current State of Multiracial Discourse” / McKibbin, Molly Littlewood
  • “Slimy Subjects and Neoliberal Goods: Obama and the Children of Fanon” / McNeil, Daniel

Book Reviews

  • Stephen Murphy-Shigematsu, When Half Is Whole: Multiethnic Asian Americans Identities / Crawford, Miki Ward
  • Ralina Joseph, Transcending Blackness: From the New Millennium Mulatta to the Exceptional Multiracial / Elam, Michele
  • Greg Carter, The United States of the United Races: A Utopian History of Racial Mixing / Mount, Guy Emerson
  • Rudy P. Guevarra, Jr., Becoming Mexipino: Multiethnic Identities and Communities in San Diego / Schlund-Vials, Cathy J.

About the Contributors

  • About the Contributors
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Mixed Race America: Identities and Culture

Posted in Arts, Communications/Media Studies, History, Live Events, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2014-02-26 22:12Z by Steven

Mixed Race America: Identities and Culture

Fifteenth Annual American Studies Conference
Macalester College
1600 Grand Avenue
Saint Paul, Minnesota 55105
2014-02-27 through 2014-02-28

Keynote Address
Thursday, 2014-02-27, 18:00-19:30 CST (Local Time)
Alexander G. Hill Ballroom
Kagin Commons, Macalester

Keynote Speakers:

Ralina L. Joseph, Associate Professor of Communication
University of Washington

Author of: Transcending Blackness: From the New Millennium Mulatta to the Exceptional Multiracial (Duke University Press, 2012).

Laura Kina, Associate Professor Art, Media and Design and Director Asian American Studies
DePaul University, Chicago, Illinois

Co-editor of: War Baby/Love Child: Mixed Race Asian American Art (University of Washington Press, 2013).

Cover design by Ricardo Levins Morales

The American Studies Department at Macalester College is honored to host the 15th annual American Studies Conference, “Mixed Race America: Identities and Culture.”

Held every February during Black History Month, the conference brings renowned scholars to campus to present their work and engage with faculty, staff, students, alumni and Twin Cities residents. The conference seeks to highlight the links between scholarship, activism and civic engagement. Each year a different theme is selected based on pertinent issues.

The American Studies Department serves as the academic focal point for the study of race and ethnicity in a national and transnational framework.

For more information on the American Studies Department or this event, contact Kathie Scott at scott@macalester.edu.

For more information, click here. Read the program guide here.

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Obama and the Oscars: Lights, Camera, Nationalism! A Symposium About The “Obama Effect” On Film Culture

Posted in Barack Obama, Communications/Media Studies, Media Archive, United States on 2014-02-15 22:53Z by Steven

Obama and the Oscars: Lights, Camera, Nationalism! A Symposium About The “Obama Effect” On Film Culture

DePaul University
Richardson Library
Rosati Room 300
2350 North Kenmore Avenue
Chicago, Illinois
Friday, 2014-02-28, 16:00-19:00 CST (Local Time)

Moderated by:

Daniel McNeil, Ida B. Wells-Barnett Professor of African and Black Diaspora Studies
DePaul University


George Elliott Clarke, Associate Professor of English
University of Toronto and Harvard University

Jasmine Nichole Cobb, Assistant Professor of Communication Studies
Northwestern University

Charles Coleman, Film Programmer
Facets Cinémathèque, Chicago, Illinois

Armond White, Editor and Film Critic
City Arts, New York, New York

During the run up to the 2014 Oscars, film producers and executives have claimed that the election and re-election of President Barack Obama has erased racial lines and created a better country. They have also linked the ‘Obama effect’ to a spate of daring films about slavery and racial discrimination in the American past. This symposium brings together leading academics, critics, and film programmers to discuss the production, distribution and marketing of films in the age of Obama, as well as the ways in which Oscar-nominated films address the history of America and the Atlantic world.

Free and open to the public.

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The Post-Racial Mystique: Media and Race in the Twenty-First Century

Posted in Anthropology, Books, Communications/Media Studies, Forthcoming Media, Monographs, Politics/Public Policy, Social Science, United States on 2014-02-15 03:32Z by Steven

The Post-Racial Mystique: Media and Race in the Twenty-First Century

New York University Press
April 2014
256 pages
9 halftones and 7 tables
Cloth ISBN: 9780814762899
Paper ISBN: 9780814770603

Catherine R. Squires, Associate Professor of Communication Studies
University of Minnesota

Despite claims from pundits and politicians that we now live in a post-racial America, people seem to keep finding ways to talk about race—from celebrations of the inauguration of the first Black president to resurgent debates about police profiling, race and racism remain salient features of our world. When faced with fervent anti-immigration sentiments, record incarceration rates of Blacks and Latinos, and deepening socio-economic disparities, a new question has erupted in the last decade: What does being post-racial mean?

The Post-Racial Mystique explores how a variety of media—the news, network television, and online, independent media—debate, define and deploy the term “post-racial” in their representations of American politics and society. Using examples from both mainstream and niche media—from prime-time television series to specialty Christian media and audience interactions on social media—Catherine Squires draws upon a variety of disciplines including communication studies, sociology, political science, and cultural studies in order to understand emergent strategies for framing post-racial America. She reveals the ways in which media texts cast U.S. history, re-imagine interpersonal relationships, employ statistics, and inventively redeploy other identity categories in a quest to formulate different ways of responding to race.

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Tuning Out Blackness: Race and Nation in the History of Puerto Rican Television

Posted in Books, Caribbean/Latin America, Communications/Media Studies, Media Archive, Monographs on 2014-02-14 01:33Z by Steven

Tuning Out Blackness: Race and Nation in the History of Puerto Rican Television

Duke University Press
280 pages
24 b&w photos
Paperback ISBN: 978-0-8223-3543-6
Cloth ISBN: 978-0-8223-3531-3

Yeidy M. Rivero, Associate Professor in the Department of Screen Arts and Culture and the Program in American Culture
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Tuning Out Blackness fills a glaring omission in U.S. and Latin American television studies by looking at the history of Puerto Rican television. In exploring the political and cultural dynamics that have shaped racial representations in Puerto Rico’s commercial media from the late 1940s to the 1990s, Yeidy M. Rivero advances critical discussions about race, ethnicity, and the media. She shows that televisual representations of race have belied the racial egalitarianism that allegedly pervades Puerto Rico’s national culture. White performers in blackface have often portrayed “blackness” in local television productions, while black actors have been largely excluded.

Drawing on interviews, participant observation, archival research, and textual analysis, Rivero considers representations of race in Puerto Rico, taking into account how they are intertwined with the island’s status as a U.S. commonwealth, its national culture, its relationship with Cuba before the Cuban Revolution in 1959, and the massive influx of Cuban migrants after 1960. She focuses on locally produced radio and television shows, particular television events, and characters that became popular media icons—from the performer Ramón Rivero’s use of blackface and “black” voice in the 1940s and 1950s, to the battle between black actors and television industry officials over racism in the 1970s, to the creation, in the 1990s, of the first Puerto Rican situation comedy featuring a black family. As the twentieth century drew to a close, multinational corporations had purchased all Puerto Rican stations and threatened to wipe out locally produced programs. Tuning Out Blackness brings to the forefront the marginalization of nonwhite citizens in Puerto Rico’s media culture and raises important questions about the significance of local sites of television production.

Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction: Translating Televisual Blackness
  • 1. Caribbean Negritos: Ramon Rivero, Blackface, and Black Voice in Puerto Rico
  • 2. Bringing the Soul: Afros, Black Empowerment, and the Resurgent Popularity of Blackface
  • 3. The CubaRican Space Revisited
  • 4. Mi familia: A Black Puerto Rican Televisual Family
  • 5. Translating and Representing Blackness
  • Notes
  • Bibliography
  • Index
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Why I Can’t Be My Son’s Mother

Posted in Articles, Communications/Media Studies, Media Archive, United States on 2014-02-13 02:21Z by Steven

Why I Can’t Be My Son’s Mother

The Blog
The Huffington Post

Shannon Shelton Miller

My 6-month-old wouldn’t smile for his stage mom, no matter what faces she made or how much she cooed in his ear. So the photographer asked for my help. I positioned myself next to the camera, directly in my son’s view, then dangled his favorite toy frog above the lens. He burst into laughter and the photographer snapped away, getting the happy baby shots the company wanted for its new product packaging.

We were done. But as my son’s Mom-for-a-Day handed him back to me, I couldn’t help thinking about how much easier it would have been if I had been cast as the mother from the beginning.

My skin was just too dark.

Acting has been a longtime hobby of mine, and I’ve been lucky to land some small jobs for ads ranging from medical equipment to vacuum cleaners. When I took acting classes, my instructors often told me that directors preferred to cast parents with their own kids for family commercials so the emotions would appear more natural. But those teachers weren’t thinking about the glaring exceptions to that rule—the white mother with her cocoa-skinned children, or the African-American mother, like me, with her vanilla baby.

Last spring, a Cheerios commercial featuring a biracial family triggered an eruption of hate speech on the company’s YouTube channel. Consumers didn’t mind, though; supportive comments significantly outnumbered hateful ones, and nearly all agreed that the biracial daughter was adorable. The commercial was a winner for Cheerios, so much so that the cereal giant released a new version that aired on Super Bowl Sunday, continuing to push against a boundary that remains curiously in place in American advertising. It’s the one place where biracial families are still invisible.

Corporations will happily cast a rainbow of Caucasian, Hispanic, Asian and African-American actors for their commercials in the name of diversity, but they’re rarely cast together. I seethed last year when I read one casting call for a major retailer requesting “real” Caucasian and African-American families, and then, in capital letters in the next sentence: “NO MIXED FAMILIES.”…

Read the entire article here.

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Where Is My Family on TV?

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Communications/Media Studies, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2014-02-11 04:33Z by Steven

Where Is My Family on TV?

The New York Times

Jenna Wortham, Technology Reporter

One of my earliest memories is of sitting in an idling car with my mom and sister outside a convenience store in Virginia. Dad’s inside, buying cigarettes and scratch-off lottery tickets. Suddenly, a wild-eyed man appears at the driver-side window, yelling about white women and black men and how they don’t belong together. My mother goes feral, blocking his access to us. My father runs out, furious and swearing, before driving us away. I don’t remember what happened next, just a confusing and searing shame about the ugliness that the sight of my family could provoke.

I hadn’t thought about that in years. But it bubbled up last spring in response to the vitriolic reactions to a Cheerios commercial showing a family that echoed my own: black dad, white mom, mocha-skinned little girl with soft curly hair. The commercial was uploaded to YouTube, where it provoked such foul, overtly racist reactions that General Mills, the maker of Cheerios, decided to delete all of the comments. The memory bubbled up once again last weekend when the same family appeared in a second Cheerios commercial, just as mild and sweet-tempered, shown during the Super Bowl. That one, too, drew online criticism, if not as intense.

Sticks and stones, the saying goes, especially on the Internet. But the outpouring of disgust about an innocuous 30-second marketing spot may signal something deeper at work, a denial of the reality that the face of our nation is changing, and fast.

According to a 2012 Census Bureau report, mixed-race Americans, while still a small minority, are one of the fastest-growing demographic groups in the country, driven by immigration and an uptick in intermarriage. Yet while there are some very public examples of seemingly stable mixed-race families — the de Blasios of New York or even Kim, Kanye and sweet baby Nori come to mind — they are remarkably absent from our screens. (Our biracial president does get his share of screen time, of course.)…

Read the entire opinion piece here.

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Alexandre Dumas: An Original Writer of Colour

Posted in Articles, Communications/Media Studies, Media Archive, United Kingdom on 2014-02-02 21:51Z by Steven

Alexandre Dumas: An Original Writer of Colour

Media Diversified: Tackling the Lack of Diversity in UK Media and the Ubiquity of Whiteness

Glen Chisholm, Councilor (Labor Party)
Ipswich, England

A new generation of viewers are being introduced to the swashbuckling adventures of D’Artagnan and his friends and brothers in arms Athos, Porthos and Aramis. Many will know their motto,

“All for one, One for all”

as their adventures are played out in the BBC’s new Sunday night family drama series. The Three Musketeers has been produced on screen in film and TV numerous times. even in the form of a cartoon, “Dogtanian and the Three Muskehounds” in the early 80′s.

For me it’s great that once again these works are getting exposure as I’ve felt a love for stories of adventure ever since I was a child. I remember my father had a collection of classic books, bound in faux leather with gold leaf print. This of course caught my attention and when I started reading them they captured my imagination. As I got older I wanted to learn more about who had created such wonderful tales and when I looked I was inspired by what I saw. Alexandre Dumas a man who like me was mixed race, a man who was black and went on to be one of the most widely read French authors in history…

Read the entire article here.

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Cheerios revisits mixed-race family for Super Bowl spot

Posted in Articles, Communications/Media Studies, Media Archive, United States on 2014-01-29 16:55Z by Steven

Cheerios revisits mixed-race family for Super Bowl spot


Ben Popken, Senior Staff Writer/Editor

For its first ever Super Bowl ad, Cheerios is telling racists to “stick a spoon in it.”

General Mills is portraying in its big game spot the same mixed-race family that drew so many hateful remarks on YouTube last May that the manufacturer had to disable comments on the video. The bigot backlash itself provoked a bigger backlash by Americans who supported the video. The clip ended up racking up over 5 million views.

In the new ad, a black father uses pieces of the cereal on the kitchen table to represent the members of the family and explain to his young bi-racial daughter Gracie how she’s getting a baby brother. Her white, pregnant mother looks on and makes a surprised face when the father assents after Gracie uses the cereal to bargain for a new puppy…

Read the entire article here.

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