Multiracial Community Organizations Response to #Ferguson

Posted in My Articles/Point of View/Activities, Politics/Public Policy, Social Science, Statements, United States on 2015-03-05 02:09Z by Steven

Multiracial Community Organizations Response to #Ferguson

2014-11-26

As members of the multiracial community, we want to express our concern and compassion for the family of Michael Brown Jr. We are connected to these events and stand in solidarity with the many individuals and communities that have been harmed by the legacies of white supremacy, privilege, and racism. As community organizers, scholars, activists, writers, and artists, we remain resolute in dismantling racism through our work and actions.

#BlackLivesMatter

Critical Mixed Race Studies
Loving Day
MAVIN
Mixed Roots Stories
Mixed Race Studies
Multiracial Americans of Southern California (MASC)
Multiracial Asian Families
National Association of Mixed Student Organizations (NAMSO)
Kaily Heitz

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BLACK AND WHITE vs BLACK OR WHITE: Bioethics and Mixed Race Families

Posted in Articles, Book/Video Reviews, Communications/Media Studies, Media Archive, My Articles/Point of View/Activities on 2015-03-03 18:54Z by Steven

BLACK AND WHITE vs BLACK OR WHITE: Bioethics and Mixed Race Families

September Williams’ Bioethics Screen Reflections: Film, Television, and Media Critiques Relevant to Bioethics
2015-03-01

September Williams, MD

Black and White, screened at the 2014 Toronto Film Festival and later at the Mill Valley Film Festival, in October 2014. The same title was also used to discuss the film in various film trade publications. However, the film’s title changed by the time of its USA distribution date, January 30, 2015. The word ‘and’ was replaced with the word ‘or’. That is, the film title became Black or White. Use of the word ‘and’ better reflects the courage of writer-director Mike Bender [Binder] in broaching contemporary issues around race and class. The film only superficially reflects two entities fighting one another. Much more prominent in the story is a struggle for Black and White to save each other. Bender [Binder] dares to suggest, we might all be in this mess together, sinking or swimming. Ignoring antebellum period themes, it’s a new take…

…Obvious bioethical concerns in Black and White include concerns for the best surrogate for a child whose parents are no longer able to parent; the age of autonomous decision making for children and historical injustices inherent in racism and classicism. The role of grief, acute and prolonged, in the context of substance abuse stands out. In the end it is the lagging of social construction, far behind the science of the human genome, that keeps viewers watching.

Stephen [Steven] Riley wrote an analysis of stresses, those identifying as Mixed Race, felt in filling out Box 9 on the 2010 United States census. He describes people agonizing about accurately portraying their racial identity. Riley states “For those who desire to portray their ‘accurate racial’ identity, I have news for you — ‘racial accuracy’ is an oxymoron. ‘Race’ as a biological, or anthropological construct is an utter fallacy”…

Read the entire article here.

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The Born Identity: Race & Identity in the Multiracial Community

Posted in Identity Development/Psychology, Live Events, Media Archive, My Articles/Point of View/Activities, Politics/Public Policy, Social Science, United States on 2015-01-28 02:55Z by Steven

The Born Identity: Race & Identity in the Multiracial Community

Districtly Speaking
Mt. Pleasant Neighborhood Library
3160 16th Street, Northwest
Washington, D.C. 20010
Thursday, 2015-01-29, 18:30-20:00 EST (Local Time)

“Race is not a universal concept — the definitions we go by are often arbitrary, uniquely American and undergo dramatic shifts from one generation to the next….perhaps it’s time to let multiracial people steer the conversation, instead of constantly having other who lack their lived experience define what they are, what they’re not and what they can be.” —Zak Cheney-Rice, Identities.Mic

“I self-identify as African American… that’s how I’m treated and that’s how I’m viewed. I’m proud of it.” —President Barack Obama

Join us on Thursday, January 29 for our first town hall of the year examining race and identity in the multiracial community. Our panelists will discuss growing up in a multiracial family, how they choose to identify themselves and how the biracial/multiracial story is being told through pop culture, the media, academia and the Obama Presidency. Got a question for our panelists? Submit your questions when you RSVP! Follow the conversation leading up to the town hall on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram! #DSMultiracial

Moderator:

Jonelle Henry, Journalist, Host & Conversation Starter; Founder & Host
Districtly Speaking

Panelists:

  • Joline Collins, Training Coordinator, Spitfire Strategies
  • Alex Laughlin, Social Media Journalist / Audience Engagement Manager, National Journal
  • Steven Riley, Founder & Creator, MixedRaceStudies.org
  • Janea West, Journalist & Cultural Critic
  • Patrick Wilborn, STEM Instructor/Tutor Instructor, College Tribe

For more information, click here.

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Two Chowan Discovery Panels in Chicago

Posted in History, Live Events, Media Archive, My Articles/Point of View/Activities, United States on 2014-11-11 23:59Z by Steven

Two Chowan Discovery Panels in Chicago

Chowan Discovery Group
Press Release
2014-10-27

Marvin T. Jones, Executive Director

Thursday, 2014-11-13, 09:00 CST (Local Time) and Friday, 2014-11-14, 16:00 CST (Local Time)

For the second consecutive conference, Chowan Discovery Group is hosting two panels at the Critical Mixed Race Studies Conference at DePaul University in Chicago. Address is DePaul University Center, 2250 N. Sheffield at the Fullerton CTA station.

  • Thursday, November 13 from 2:15 to 3:45pm, Room 325: “Mobility and Definition in Mixed-Race History.” The moderator is Mayola Cotterman, retired professor, Northwestern University. The panelists are:
    • Dr. Arwin D. Smallwood (North Carolina A&T University): “Documenting and Exploring the Early History of Mixed Race Peoples: Over Five Hundred Years of the Merging of Native American, African, and European Peoples in North America from the 1500s to Present”
    • Ainsworth Tracy (New York College – CUNY): “Documenting the Intersections and History of African-Americans and Native Americans in Colonial America: American Marronage: An Examination of Eastern North Carolina.”
    • Marvin T. Jones (Chowan Discovery Group): “Measurements of a Mixed-Race Community – the Winton Triangle.” Jones’ presentation will give the audience the size and scope of the Winton Triangle by showing numbers of large houses, stores, churches, acreages, professionals and educators.
  • Friday, November 14 from 1:45 to 3:15pm, Room 314A: “Beginnings and Transitions of Mixed Race People in North Carolina.” The Moderator is Steven F. Riley of www.mixedracestudies.org. Panelists are:
    • Lars Adams (Independent Writer): “The Algonquians of North Carolina: Ethnic Transformation and Identity Retention in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries”
    • Dr. Arwin D. Smallwood (North Carolina A&T University): “One of America’s First Mixed Race Peoples: A Study of the Tuscarora and the Indian Woods, Reservation Established in Bertie County, North Carolina in 1717.”
    • Marvin T. Jones (Chowan Discovery Group): “A Mixed Race Family at War – The Robbins Family.” We are still in the time of the 150th anniversary observances of the Civil War. This story is about one Mixed Race Family and its role in the War and beyond.

For last minute information call 202.236.2030.

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What is the Black German Experience? A Review of the Black German Cultural Society of New Jersey 2nd Annual Convention

Posted in Articles, Europe, Live Events, Media Archive, My Articles/Point of View/Activities, United States on 2014-08-18 00:35Z by Steven

What is the Black German Experience? A Review of the Black German Cultural Society of New Jersey 2nd Annual Convention

MixedRaceStudies.org
2012-08-17

Steven F. Riley

All photographs ©2012, Steven F. Riley

I received more than a few raised eyebrows after describing the recent trip my wife and I took to attend the Black German Cultural Society of New Jersey’s Second Annual Convention at Barnard College in New York. If you are tempted to believe that being both Black and German is an oxymoron; think again. African and German interactions go back as far as at least 1600. A fact that is unknown to most, Germany played a significant role during the American Civil Rights Movement as described in Maria Höhn and Martin Klimke’s book Breath of Freedom: The Civil Rights Struggle, African American GIs, and Germany. Although Black Germans, or rather Afro-Germans, consist of less than 1% of the German population (exact numbers are difficult to determine because German demographics do not track race), they are a growing and vocal segment within Germany and beyond.

Panel Session I: Teaching the Black German Experience – Roundtable Discussion, (Professor Priscilla Layne, Professor Peggy Piesche, Noah Sow and Professor Sara Lennox.) (2012-08-10)

I had the opportunity to experience a bit of this Afro-German experience at the screening of Mo Asumang’s autobiographical film Roots Germania at the BGCSNJ inaugural convention last year here in Washington, D.C. What I saw made me want to learn more.

BGCSNJ President, Rosemarie Peña (2012-08-10) Professor and BGCSNJ Trustee Leroy T. Hopkins (2012-08-11)

This year’s convention ran from August 10 to August 11, 2012 in Barnard’s Diana Center with the exception of the spoken word performances held at the Geothe-Institut’s Wyoming Building in lower Manhattan. I attended most of the sessions which consisted of five panels; a keynote address by Yara Colette Lemke Muniz de Faria; live readings by authors Olumide Popoola and Philipp Kabo Köpsell; a movie screening of the films “Hope in My Heart: The May Ayim Story” and “Audre Lorde—The Berlin Years 1984-1992;” a dinner banquet; and finally a live performance by author, artist, media personality, musician, playwright, actress, scholar and human rights activist Noah Sow’s band, Noiseaux at the Blue Note.

Olumide Popoola and Professor Peggy Piesche pay close attention during Panel Session II: Historical and Popular Cultures of Blacks in Germany. (2012-08-11)

It is very important to note that the term “Afro-German” is a socio-political term that includes all Germans (or German identified) individuals of African descent. Although most Afro-Germans are what we in the United States might refer to as, “of mixed-parentage” (usually a “white” mother and “black” father), no distinction is made within the Afro-German diaspora between individuals of so-called “mixed” and “non-mixed” parentage. I heard the term “biracial/multiracial” no more than five times during the entire conference. I theorize that this social taxonomy is derived from the desire not to fragment an already tiny group within German society and also create internalized marginalization within an already marginalized group. A further defining of this group identity was made by Noah Sow, near the end of the first panel, “Teaching the Black German Experience,” when she emphasized that the most appropriate terminology, should be the German term, Afrodeutsche, rather than Afro- or Black- German. During her introduction of the keynote speaker, BGCSNJ president Rosemarie Peña obliged, by referring to herself as Afrodeutsche. Time will tell if this label will stick.

Witnessing Our Histories–Reclaiming the Black German Experience. From presentation by Professor Tina Campt. (2012-08-11)

The highlight of the conference was Yara Colette Lemke Muniz de Faria’s keynote address, “In their Best Interest… Afro-German Children in Postwar German Children’s Homes” which explored the plight of so-called “War/Brown/Occupation Babies”—the children born of the union between white German women and Black American GIs after World War II. She described the systematic removal of Afro-German children from their birth families into substandard orphanages or foster homes, where many faced emotional and physical abuse. Her keynote touched on the story of Ika Hügel-Marshall, who describes her saga in her autobiography, Invisible Woman: Growing Up Black in Germany.

Also of note were the two touching presentations by Vera Ingrid Grant, “Ruby Road: An Excerpt from Paper Girl,” and Debra Abell, “Sauerkraut and Black-Eyed Peas” within the panel “Telling Our Stories – Black German Life Writing” which both explored the life experiences of growing up in the United States as children of a white German mother and black American soldier. Lastly, Jamele Watkins’s, “Performing Bruce Norris’ Clybourne Park in Germany” within the panel “ Historical and Popular Cultures of Blacks in Germany” explored the representation of blacks within theatrical presentations in Germany and discussed the controversial continued use of blackface by white German actors to represent black people.

Vera Ingrid Grant, “Ruby Road: An Excerpt from Paper Girl” (2012-08-11) Debra Abell, “Sauerkraut and Black-Eyed Peas” (2012-08-11)

One slight disappointment was the poor sound, poor ventilation, poor visibility and poor lighting of the Goethe Institut’s Wyoming Building that was used as a venue for the artist performances (who traveled all the way from Europe). Were they trying to recreate a German U-boat aesthetic? Barnard’s Diana Center Event Oval on Lower Level 1—which was used for all of the panels—would have sufficed nicely. If a smaller venue was needed, the Glicker-Milstein Black Box Theatre on Lower Level 2 would have fit the bill also. I looked forward to what appeared to be an excellent documentary, “Audre Lorde—The Berlin Years 1984-1992,” on the life of American feminist scholar and poet Audre Lorde (1934-1992), who allegedly was the inspiration encouraging Black-German women to “call themselves ‘Afro-German’ and to record ‘their-story’.” Like Lorde, who’s life was sadly cut short due to cancer, the film screening was also sadly cut short about a third of the way in due to a defective DVD.

Philipp Kabo Köpsell ponders his forthcoming anthology while waiting for a turkey burger. (2012-08-11)

Like any excellent conference, the personal interactions can be as fulfilling as the sessions. The BGCSNJ Second Annual Convention was no exception. My Friday and Saturday morning chats at our hotel with Millersville University Professor of German Literature, Leroy T. Hopkins provided me with an insight into the joys and challenges of teaching German literature as a person of color and to students of color. With a declining interest in the German language by students nationwide (largely due to an increased interest in Chinese and Arabic languages), Hopkins is hopeful that Afro-German authors like Köpsell, Popoola and others will publish their works in German to provide more contemporary reading materials for university classrooms.

On an ironic note, I had the pleasure of having a one-on-one conversation over lunch on Saturday with author and spoken word author Philipp Kabo Köpsell about the necessity to write about the Afro-German experience in English. He and others are working on a book project tentatively titled, “Witnessed.”

This conference would not have been possible without the dedicated work of BGCSNJ president Rosemarie Peña and her fellow staff. Rosemarie is a woman who found out—through documentation in 1994 that she “wasn’t who she thought she was” and discovered that her biological father was black, possibly an African American soldier, and her mother was white and a German national. On Wednesday, she reported to me by phone that they are planning for the third annual convention next August.

If you are the least bit interested in the Afrodeutsche experience, I would highly encourage anyone to make plans to attend next year.

©2012, Steven F. Riley

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Acknowledgment (Part 2)

Posted in Excerpts/Quotes, My Articles/Point of View/Activities on 2014-07-26 02:43Z by Steven

The journalistic survey, and monographic studies of Obama have been joined by some important anthologies. One of the first notable anthologies written about race and Obama was edited by historian and political scientist Manning Marable and civil rights attorney Kristen Clarke. This volume, entitled Barack Obama and African American Empowerment: The Rise of Black Americas New Leadership (2009), traces the evolution of black leadership and black politics since the civil rights movement, including essays that specifically interrogate the intersection of race and gender. The Speech: Race and Barack Obama’s A More Perfect Union Speech (2009), edited by Denean Sharpley-Whiting, includes key chapters on the Obama speech by Bakari Kitwana and William Julius Wilson. Social scientists Matthew Hughey and Gregory S. Parks compiled an edited volume entitled The Obama’s and a (Post) Racial America? (2011), which examines the unconscious anti-black bias harbored by whites in US society, including commentaries by some noted race scholars. These are but a few of the torrent of scholarly publications on race and the Obama phenomenon. For an extensive list of over 400 publications on Obama see Steven F. Riley’s Mixed Race Studies website: http://www.mixedracestudies.org?cat=63.

Hettie V. Williams and G. Reginald Daniel, “Preface,” in Race and the Obama Phenomenon: The Vision of a More Perfect Multiracial Union, eds. G. Reginald Daniel and Hettie V. Williams (Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2014). xvii.

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MixedRaceStudies.org Celebrates Its Fifth Year!

Posted in Articles, My Articles/Point of View/Activities, New Media on 2014-05-29 13:12Z by Steven

MixedRaceStudies.org Celebrates Its Fifth Year!

2014-05-29

Steven F. Riley

This month, MixedRaceStudies.org celebrates its fifth year. The purpose of the site, to provide a non-commercial gateway to interdisciplinary English language scholarship about multiraciality, has held steady for the last five years. Since then, the amount of content has mushroomed to over 7,000 posts and I continue to maintain the site today.

At this five-year mark, a collection of nearly 4,000 articles, over 1,100 books, and thousands of other items from various media sources are available to peruse. The site design provides links for users to follow, with excerpted remarks and passages to educate, illuminate, and pique a reader’s curiosity. Since early 2014, the site now has an active bibliography of books!

Part of the enjoyment of maintaining the site is that I have to continually update categories to keep pace with the ever-evolving field of mixed race studies.

Users from all over the world have corresponded with me, often commending the richness and usefulness of the material. One Ph.D. student wrote to say, “It’s probably the single most valuable tool in my work.”

Five years into its existence, the site now welcomes over 2,500 visitors per day; logging over 750,000 page views per month.

Thank you for your support!

Complicating Race or Reproducing Whiteness? Heidi Durrow and The Girl Who Fell From the Sky

Posted in Articles, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Media Archive, My Articles/Point of View/Activities, United States on 2014-04-17 01:53Z by Steven

Complicating Race or Reproducing Whiteness? Heidi Durrow and The Girl Who Fell From the Sky

Gino Michael Pellegrini: Education, Race, Multiraciality, Class & Solidarity
2014-04-13

Gino Michael Pellegrini, Adjunct Assistant Professor of English
Pierce College, Woodland Hills, California

[This is an excerpt from a paper (currently being revised) that I presented last month at the 2014 MELUS Conference in Oklahoma City.]

[…] Heidi Durrow is also the latest member of the mixed-experience generation to achieve widespread recognition following the publication of her deeply autobiographical first novel. The Girl Who Fell From the Sky was published in 2010 after winning the 2008 PEN/Bellwether Prize for a first novel that addresses social justice issues. It became a national bestseller in 2011, and is now available in French, Dutch, Danish, and Portuguese. This is a remarkable accomplishment for a book that was repeatedly rejected by the traditional publishing industry.

For those who are unfamiliar, The Girl Who Fell From the Sky recounts the racialization, alienation, coming of age, and coming to multiracial consciousness of Durrow’s fictional intermediary, Rachel Morse. Rachel is the sole survivor of a heartbreaking tragedy: her Danish mother Nella jumps from a rooftop in Chicago with all her biracial children. After recovering, Rachel is sent to live with her paternal grandmother who lives in a predominantly black neighborhood in Portland, Oregon. Her alcoholic father, an airman stationed overseas, has disappeared from her life. The year is 1982. Rachel is seen as a light-skinned black girl by her new family and by the surrounding community. From the 5th grade onward, she identifies herself as black, but is still ridiculed for talking white; she is both resented and desired for her good hair and blue eyes. In short, Durrow’s novel recounts from multiple perspectives how Rachel comes to understand the tragedy that claimed her mother and siblings, and in the process reclaim her Danish cultural memory, becoming Afro-Viking like Durrow…

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.

Articles

  • “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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A Breakdown & Discussion of Upcoming Events with Our Very Own, Steve Riley

Posted in Audio, Live Events, Media Archive, My Articles/Point of View/Activities, United States on 2014-02-12 16:58Z by Steven

A Breakdown & Discussion of Upcoming Events with Our Very Own, Steve Riley

Mixed Race Radio
Blog Talk Radio
2014-02-12, 17:00Z (12:00 EDT)

Tiffany Rae Reid, Host

On Wednesday’s episode of Mixed Race Radio, Steve Riley (mixedracestudies. org) will join me to discuss some upcoming events and performances occurring all over the world. Whether you are in Chicago, Los Angeles, or Philadelphia, PA, there are things to do, places to go and people to meet.

If you are hosting an event or need someone to “go-with”, join us and share, share, share.

We’ve got updates from Laura Kina, Lisa Jones (Topaz Club), and Steve Riley. Oh yeah……If you reside in the Republic of Georgia, we’ll let you know where to go to get a mulatto spray tan….Yes, I said it!!!

You see we have a lot to discuss so please feel free to join us by dialing in or joining our chat room.

And don’t forget to tell a friend.

Also, we want to use this time to say “Thank You” to everyone who continues to follow us. You may have noticed that our site is missing a few episodes from the past few weeks. For anyone who doesn’t know, I’ve been broadcasting live from Northeastern Ohio since early January and Mother Nature continues to express her authority over all things by sending -35 degree temps and record snowfalls our way. Needless to say, when pipes burst, fire alarms begin to sound and therefore radio shows cannot be recorded. So, thank you for your continued support.

As long as Mother Nature allows, we will continue to bring you episodes that showcase some amazing people and even more amazing movements.

Keep the emails and phone calls coming.

WON’T YOU JOIN US?