Women and Mixed Race Representation in Film: Eight Star Profiles

Posted in Biography, Books, Communications/Media Studies, History, Media Archive, Passing, United States, Women on 2021-10-27 20:24Z by Steven

Women and Mixed Race Representation in Film: Eight Star Profiles

McFarland
2021-09-10
302 pages
54 photos, notes, bibliography, index
7 x 10
Softcover ISBN: 978-1-4766-6338-8
eBook ISBN: 978-1-4766-4473-8

Valerie C. Gilbert
Seattle, Washington

This book uses a black/white interracial lens to examine the lives and careers of eight prominent American-born actresses from the silent age through the studio era, New Hollywood, and into the present century: Josephine Baker, Nina Mae McKinney, Fredi Washington, Lena Horne, Dorothy Dandridge, Lonette McKee, Jennifer Beals and Halle Berry. Combining biography with detailed film readings, the author fleshes out the tragic mulatto stereotype, while at the same time exploring concepts and themes such as racial identity, the one-drop rule, passing, skin color, transracial adoption, interracial romance, and more. With a wealth of background information, this study also places these actresses in historical context, providing insight into the construction of race, both onscreen and off.

Table of Contents

  • Preface
  • Introduction
  • 1. Josephine Baker: From Exotic Savage to Creole Queen
  • 2. Nina Mae McKinney: Dichotomy of a Hollywood Black Woman
  • 3. Fredi Washington: Paradox of Black Identity
  • 4. Lena Horne: Separate and Unequalled
  • 5. Dorothy Dandridge: ­Star-Crossed Crossover Star
  • 6. Lonette McKee: Mixed Race Heroine Remix
  • 7. Jennifer Beals: White But Not Quite
  • 8. Halle Berry: Imitation of Dorothy Dandridge
  • Chapter Notes
  • Bibliography
  • Screen Title Index
  • Subject Index
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Dutch Children of African American Liberators: Race, Military Policy and Identity in World War II and Beyond

Posted in Books, Europe, History, Monographs, United States on 2021-10-27 19:28Z by Steven

Dutch Children of African American Liberators: Race, Military Policy and Identity in World War II and Beyond

McFarland
2020-09-30
50 photos, appendices, notes, bibliography, index
6×9
Softcover ISBN: 978-1-4766-7693-7
eBook ISBN: 978-1-4766-4114-0

Mieke Kirkels and Chris Dickon

In the Netherlands, a small group of biracial citizens has entered its eighth decade of lives that have been often puzzling and difficult, but which offer a unique insight into the history of race relations in America. Though their African American fathers had brought liberation from Nazi tyranny at the end of World War II, they had arrived in a segregated American military that derived from a racially divisive American society.

Decades later, some of their children could finally know of a father’s identity and the life he had led after the war. Just one would be able to find an embrace in his arms, and just one to visit her father’s American grave after 73 years. But they could now understand their own Dutch lives in the context of their fathers’ lives in America. This book relates their experiences, offering fresh insight into the history of American race relations.

Table of Contents

  • Preface
  • One­—War Babies
  • Two—Social Reality, Military Policy
  • Three—Liberation and Slavery
  • Four—Aftermath
  • Five—Margraten
  • Six—Limited Service
  • Seven—Liberation Children
  • Eight—In England
  • Nine—Out of England
  • Ten—Occupation Babies
  • Eleven—Adulthood
  • Twelve—Settling Lives
  • Thirteen—International Families
  • Afterword by Sebastiaan Vonk
  • About the Authors
  • Appendix: Relevant World War II Era Law and Custom for International Marriage, Immigration, Birth Status, Adoption and Assistance
  • Chapter Notes
  • Bibliography
  • Index
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A New Novel Gives Wings — and a Megaphone — to a Complex Woman

Posted in Articles, Biography, Book/Video Reviews, Caribbean/Latin America, History, Media Archive, Slavery, Women on 2021-10-27 19:26Z by Steven

A New Novel Gives Wings — and a Megaphone — to a Complex Woman

The New York Times
2021-07-08

Carole V. Bell


Steffi Walthall

ISLAND QUEEN
By Vanessa Riley

Vanessa Riley was intrigued when she encountered the figure of Miss Lambe in Jane Austen’s unfinished final novel, “Sanditon.” Given the dearth of people of color in 18th- and 19th-century British literature, she wanted to know where the wealthy colored debutante had come from. Was she a product of a progressive authorial imagination? Or had real-life Miss Lambes merely been excised from popular culture and public memory?

The quest to “find Miss Lambe” turned into a long and meaningful one for the author — a 10-year journey, which revealed that Austen’s aims may have been progressive but they weren’t born of fantasy. As Riley wrote, “Finding Dorothy Kirwan Thomas, the women of the Entertainment Society, and so many other Black women who had agency and access to all levels of power has restored my soul.”

Riley’s commitment to restoring these unsung women to their rightful place in the popular imagination was a driving force behind her riveting and transformative new novel. Yet her chosen subject bears little resemblance to a pampered heiress like Miss Lambe; the contours of Dorothy Kirwan Thomas’s life have a much harsher bent. Called “Doll” or “Dolly” when she was young, Dorothy was born to an Irish planter and an enslaved woman in 1756 on the island of Montserrat. In her 90 years, she endured bondage, assault and abuse, secured her own freedom against incredible odds, accumulated great wealth and considerable influence, and became the founding matriarch of a prosperous Caribbean clan…

Read the entire book review here.

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The Truth About White America

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Latino Studies, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2021-10-27 16:09Z by Steven

The Truth About White America

The Atlantic
2021-10-25

Morris Levy, Associate Professor of Political Science and International Relations
University of Southern California

Richard Alba, Distinguished Professor of Sociology
Graduate Center, City University of New York

Dowell Myers, Professor of Policy, Planning, and Demography
University of Southern California


The Atlantic

The Census Bureau wanted to gather data about a changing nation, but ended up reinforcing old racial categories.

If you paid attention to the news this summer about the release of 2020 census data, you probably heard that America’s white population is in free fall. Big, if true.

The statistic that launched a thousand hot takes and breathless voice-overs about racial change was a supposed 8.6 percent, or 19 million, drop in the number of white Americans since 2010. Headlines cast this decline as unprecedented in census history and signaled that the nation’s majority-minority future loomed even closer than previously forecast. Pundits spun it as a harbinger of policy change and partisan realignment, for better or worse. Some wisely cautioned against demography-as-destiny assumptions in a country where the definition and public understanding of race can change rapidly. But few observers questioned whether the reported differences between the 2010 and 2020 censuses reflected real demographic change or simply statistical noise.

Commentators should have read the fine print before rushing to trot out their favorite narratives. If they had, they would have discovered that the eye-popping figure at the center of this summer’s hoopla is an illusion. The apparent decline in the white population is a result of changes to the Census Bureau’s protocol for measuring and classifying racial identity. The changes aimed to more accurately gauge the expansion of the country’s mixed-race population through new and more sophisticated data collection and classification techniques that capture the nuances of Americans’ multifaceted racial and ethnic identities. But a combination of bureaucratic constraints and messaging failures paved the way to public confusion…

Read the entire article here.

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