Mixed Race Seattle Conference

Posted in Forthcoming Media, Live Events on 2020-02-18 19:15Z by Steven

Mixed Race Seattle Conference

Blaine Memorial United Methodist Church
3001 24th Ave South
Seattle, Washington 98144
Saturday, 2020-03-28, 09:00-17:00 PDT (Local Time)

Join Seattle JACL for the Mixed Race Seattle conference, a transformative day of storytelling, art, and creative expression meant to grow community among multiracial teens, young adults, and their families. This event is free and open for all to attend. Mixed race youth are among the fastest-growing population in the United States. But despite being a major presence in America, Mixed Race people continue to experience oppression, racism, and marginalization in different ways.

Seattle JACL is the flagship chapter of the nations’ second oldest Asian American civil rights organization. Its vision to “promote a world that honors diversity by respecting values of fairness, equality and social justice,” is rooted in its belief that in America, race still presents one of the biggest challenges to justice for all people, and in particular, for Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color. Seattle JACL presents this event through a 2020 Legacy Grant from JACL National, a smART Ventures Grant from The Seattle Office of Arts & Culture, and through a special partnership with Sharon H Chang, author of “Raising Mixed Race” and “Hapa Tales and Other Lies.”

For more information and to register, click here.

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Biofictions: Race, Genetics and the Contemporary Novel

Posted in Books, Forthcoming Media, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Monographs on 2020-02-18 19:14Z by Steven

Biofictions: Race, Genetics and the Contemporary Novel

Bloomsbury
2020-02-20
224 pages
Hardback ISBN: 9781350099838
EPUB eBook ISBN: 9781350099852
PDF eBook ISBN: 9781350099845

Josie Gill, Lecturer in Black British Writing
University of Bristol, United Kingdom

In this important interdisciplinary study, Josie Gill explores how the contemporary novel has drawn upon, and intervened in, debates about race in late 20th and 21st century genetic science. Reading works by leading contemporary writers including Zadie Smith, Kazuo Ishiguro, Octavia Butler and Colson Whitehead, Biofictions demonstrates how ideas of race are produced at the intersection of science and fiction, which together create the stories about identity, racism, ancestry and kinship which characterize our understanding of race today. By highlighting the role of narrative in the formation of racial ideas in science, this book calls into question the apparent anti-racism of contemporary genetics, which functions narratively, rather than factually or objectively, within the racialized contexts in which it is embedded. In so doing, Biofictions compels us to rethink the long-asked question of whether race is a biological fact or a fiction, calling instead for a new understanding of the relationship between race, science and fiction.

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • 1. The Roots of African Eve: Science Writing on Human Origins and Alex Haley’s Roots
  • 2. Race, Genetic Ancestry Tracing and Facial Expression: “Focusing on the Faces” in Kazuo Ishiguro’s Never Let Me Go
  • 3. “One Part Truth and Three Parts Fiction”: Race, Science and Narrative in Zadie Smith’s White Teeth
  • 4. “The Sick Swollen Heart of This Land”: Pharmacogenomics, Racial Medicine and Colson Whitehead’s Apex Hides the Hurt
  • 5. Mutilation and Mutation: Epigenetics and Racist Environments in Octavia Butler’s Kindred and Salman Rushdie’s The Satanic Verses
  • Conclusion
  • Bibliography
  • Index
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Penn Medicine and the Afterlives of Slavery (PMAS) presents: Christianity, Race, and Haunting of the Biomedical Sciences

Posted in Forthcoming Media, Health/Medicine/Genetics, History, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Live Events, Religion, United States on 2020-02-18 19:13Z by Steven

Penn Medicine and the Afterlives of Slavery (PMAS) presents: Christianity, Race, and Haunting of the Biomedical Sciences

University of Pennsylvania
Max Kade Center
3401 Walnut Street
Suite 329-A
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Wednesday, 2020-02-19, 16:00-17:30 EST (Local Time)

Terence Keel, Associate, Associate Professor, Department of African American Studies and the UCLA Institute for Society & Genetics
University of California, Los Angeles

The idea that so-called races reflect inherent biological differences between social groups has been a prominent aspect of Western thought since at least the Enlightenment. While there have been moments of refuting this way of thinking—most notably, the social constructionist thesis emerging as a dominant framework in the aftermath of WWII—fixed biological conceptions of race haunt new genetic technologies, where race is thought to be measurable at the molecular level. Keel argues that the resilience of this naturalized understanding of race may stem less from overtly political motives on the part of scientists and more from our inherited theological traditions that predate the Enlightenment and continue to shape and limit the intellectual horizon of scientific reasoning.

For more information, click here.

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Interracialism: Biracials Learning About African-American Culture (BLAAC) with Dr. Zebulon Vance Miletsky

Posted in Forthcoming Media, Identity Development/Psychology, Live Events, Politics/Public Policy, Social Science, United States on 2020-02-18 19:12Z by Steven

Interracialism: Biracials Learning About African-American Culture (BLAAC) with Dr. Zebulon Vance Miletsky

State University of New York, Stony Brook
Frank Melville Jr. Memorial Library
Central Reading Room
100 Nicolls Road
Stony Brook, New York 11794
2020-02-19, 16:00-17:15 EDT (Local Time)

Zebulon Vance Miletsky, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Africana Studies and History

A discussion of interracialism and interracial marriage, and the phenomenon of “anti blackness”—identity and mixed race in the 21st century, and the possible stakes for those who identify as multiracial and biracial—in these politically divided times.

For more information, click here.

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A Dark Inheritance: Blood, Race, and Sex in Colonial Jamaica by Brooke N. Newman (review)

Posted in Articles, Book/Video Reviews, Caribbean/Latin America, History, Media Archive, Slavery, United Kingdom on 2020-02-18 19:09Z by Steven

A Dark Inheritance: Blood, Race, and Sex in Colonial Jamaica by Brooke N. Newman (review)

Eighteenth-Century Studies
Volume 53, Number 2, Winter 2020
pages 314-316
DOI: 10.1353/ecs.2020.0021

Katherine Johnston, Assistant Professor of History
Beloit College, Beloit, Wisconsin

Brooke N. Newman, Dark Inheritance: Blood, Race, and Sex in Colonial Jamaica (New Haven: Yale Univ. Press, 2018). Pp. 352; 25 b/w illus. $65.00 cloth.

In eighteenth–century Jamaica, who counted as a British subject? As Brooke N. Newman demonstrates in her impressively researched new book, the answer was complicated. Although a 1661 royal proclamation stated that children of English subjects born on the island would be “free denizens of England,” by the early eighteenth century the colonial assembly in Jamaica had imposed its own restrictions on subjecthood (2). Aligning the rights and privileges of subject status—including the ability to vote, hold public office, and serve on a jury—with whiteness, members of the assembly took it upon themselves to determine who was eligible for this status and who was not. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the majority of the island’s population failed to meet the exclusive standards imposed by the assembly. Only “non–African, non–Indian, non–Jewish, and unmixed” people could claim subject status as a birthright (28). Despite white Jamaicans’ perennial anxiety about Africans and their descendants vastly outnumbering white settlers, colonial legislators’ desire to “preserve the purity of British lineage in the tropics” led them to deny mixed–race people subject status, effectively alienating many children and grandchildren from their white fathers and grandfathers (22).

A select few individuals of mixed descent, however, successfully petitioned the assembly for the right to subjecthood. Newman draws upon these appeals as she seeks to explain the ways that blood inheritance as a means of racial distinction and legal status developed in colonial Jamaica. In Newman’s analysis, the cases of elite individuals and families who requested subject status from the assembly highlight the instability of racial designations throughout the eighteenth century. Social standing, financial position, and religion all entered into the assembly’s calculations regarding who could attain subject status and who counted as white. Timing mattered, too: in the 1730s, 40s, and 50s, for example, mixed-race people could “whiten” within three generations, while in the 1760s, 70s, and 80s it took four generations to erase “the stain of African origins” (91). Moreover, often the elites who were granted white status were denied the full privileges associated with subjecthood. These individuals were “not fully ‘white’ in the eyes of the law but rather legally whitened, on the path toward whiteness” (97). But as Newman makes clear, “legal whiteness” (70) did not make a person “white by blood” (114). This distinction is critical to Newman’s analysis, as she argues that Jamaican legislators “privileged blood as a material and symbolic conduit” that transmitted a variety of qualities, including “character, mind, and temperament” from parents to offspring (69).

Examining petitions for white status by persons of mixed descent in the first half of the book allows Newman to make some critical points about race. First, she shows that racial definitions in the British West Indies looked a great deal like those in the Spanish colonies, with careful delineations of racial categories based upon percentages of African and European blood. In colonial Jamaica, people’s ancestry mattered. Second, and most importantly, the process of legal whitening that took into account a person’s finances, religion, and connections to elite white men reveals the unstable nature of race during this period. As Newman demonstrates, whiteness was fungible rather than fixed; the varying outcomes of people’s petitions provide strong evidence that whiteness was “a malleable social and legal category” (126).

In addition to these important points about race, the legislative appeals also serve as a touchstone for questions of colonial authority and power. The Jamaican colonial assembly made its own laws in some cases, disregarding British common law precedent. But it was not a fully autonomous body, and appeals for citizenship approved by the local assembly had to be confirmed by the Privy Council in London. The relationship between the colonial and British legislative bodies was under continuous negotiation, even though white Jamaicans largely claimed authority for themselves.

While petitions for subject status lie at the heart of a tightly…

Read or purchase the review here.

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Multiracial Identities and Monoracism: Examining the Influence of Oppression

Posted in Articles, Campus Life, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive, United States on 2020-02-18 18:39Z by Steven

Multiracial Identities and Monoracism: Examining the Influence of Oppression

Journal of College Student Development
Volume 61, Number 1, January-February 2020
pages 18-33
DOI: 10.1353/csd.2020.0001

Marc P. Johnston-Guerrero, Associate Professor of Higher Education and Student Affairs
Ohio State University

Vu T. Tran, Assistant Director of Residence Education
Michigan State University

Lisa Combs, Program Coordinator for School Diversity and Multicultural Affairs
Loyola University Chicago

We explored how notions of oppression manifest in the identities of 16 multiracial college students. We were guided by two research questions: (a) How does racial oppression affect multiracial students’ identities? and (b) Is that racial oppression tied to traditional manifestations of racism, monoracism, or both? Findings demonstrate that racial oppression is influential, yet there are difficulties in identifying racial oppression that targets multiracial people. This study highlights the need for more education on monoracism as a unique and connected form of oppression and on racial asymmetries within multiraciality.

Read or purchase the article here.

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Whiter: Asian American Women on Skin Color and Colorism

Posted in Anthologies, Asian Diaspora, Autobiography, Books, Forthcoming Media, United States, Women on 2020-02-18 18:23Z by Steven

Whiter: Asian American Women on Skin Color and Colorism

New York University Press
March 2020
280 pages
6.00 x 9.00 in
Paperback ISBN: 9781479800292
Hardcover ISBN: 9781479881086

Edited by:

Nikki Khanna, Associate Professor of Sociology
University of Vermont

Whiter

Heartfelt personal accounts from Asian American women on their experiences with skin color bias, from being labeled “too dark” to becoming empowered to challenge beauty standards

“I have a vivid memory of standing in my grandmother’s kitchen, where, by the table, she closely watched me as I played. When I finally looked up to ask why she was staring, her expression changed from that of intent observer to one of guilt and shame. . . . ‘My anak (dear child),’ she began, ‘you are so beautiful. It is a shame that you are so dark. No Filipino man will ever want to marry you.’” —“Shade of Brown,” Noelle Marie Falcis

How does skin color impact the lives of Asian American women? In Whiter, thirty Asian American women provide first-hand accounts of their experiences with colorism in this collection of powerful, accessible, and brutally honest essays, edited by Nikki Khanna.

Featuring contributors of many ages, nationalities, and professions, this compelling collection covers a wide range of topics, including light-skin privilege, aspirational whiteness, and anti-blackness. From skin-whitening creams to cosmetic surgery, Whiter amplifies the diverse voices of Asian American women who continue to bravely challenge the power of skin color in their own lives.

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Archives of Conjure: Stories of the Dead in Afrolatinx Cultures

Posted in Anthropology, Books, Caribbean/Latin America, Forthcoming Media, Gay & Lesbian, Literary/Artistic Criticism, Monographs, Religion on 2020-02-18 18:22Z by Steven

Archives of Conjure: Stories of the Dead in Afrolatinx Cultures

Columbia University Press
March 2020
272 pages
Paperback ISBN: 9780231194334
Hardcover ISBN: 9780231194327
E-book ISBN: 9780231550765

Solimar Otero, Professor of Folklore
Indiana University, Bloomington

Archives of Conjure

In Afrolatinx religious practices such as Cuban Espiritismo, Puerto Rican Santería, and Brazilian Candomblé, the dead tell stories. Communicating with and through mediums’ bodies, they give advice, make requests, and propose future rituals, creating a living archive that is coproduced by the dead. In this book, Solimar Otero explores how Afrolatinx spirits guide collaborative spiritual-scholarly activist work through rituals and the creation of material culture. By examining spirit mediumship through a Caribbean cross-cultural poetics, she shows how divinities and ancestors serve as active agents in shaping the experiences of gender, sexuality, and race.

Otero argues that what she calls archives of conjure are produced through residual transcriptions or reverberations of the stories of the dead whose archives are stitched, beaded, smoked, and washed into official and unofficial repositories. She investigates how sites like the ocean, rivers, and institutional archives create connected contexts for unlocking the spatial activation of residual transcriptions. Drawing on over ten years of archival research and fieldwork in Cuba, Otero centers the storytelling practices of Afrolatinx women and LGBTQ spiritual practitioners alongside Caribbean literature and performance. Archives of Conjure offers vital new perspectives on ephemerality, temporality, and material culture, unraveling undertheorized questions about how spirits shape communities of practice, ethnography, literature, and history and revealing the deeply connected nature of art, scholarship, and worship.

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Raising Multiracial Children: Tools for Nurturing Identity in a Racialized World

Posted in Books, Family/Parenting, Forthcoming Media, Identity Development/Psychology, Monographs, Teaching Resources on 2020-02-18 18:21Z by Steven

Raising Multiracial Children: Tools for Nurturing Identity in a Racialized World

Penguin Random House Canada
2020-04-07
224 pages
Paperback ISBN: 9781623174491
Ebook ISBN: 9781623174507

Farzana Nayani

The essential guide to parenting multiracial and multiethnic children of all ages—and learning to nourish, support, and celebrate their multiracial identity.

While the fastest growing demographic in the US is comprised of people who identify as two or more races, parents of muliethnic kids still lack practical, concrete resources written just for them. In a world where people are more likely to proclaim colorblindness than talk openly about race, how can we truly value, support, and celebrate our kids’ identity? How can we assess our own sense of racial readiness, and develop a deeper understanding of the issues facing multiracial children today?

Raising Multiracial Children gives parents the tools for exploring race with their children, offering practical guidance on how to initiate conversations; consciously foster multicultural identity development; discuss issues like microaggressions, intersectionality, and privilege; and intentionally cultivate a sense of belonging. It provides an overview of key issues and current topics relevant to raising multiracial children and offers strategies that can be implemented in the classroom and at home, with developmentally appropriate milestones from infancy through adulthood. The book ends with resources and references for further learning and exploration.

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“What Are You?”: Addressing Racial Ambiguity

Posted in Articles, Media Archive, Philosophy on 2020-02-18 18:17Z by Steven

“What Are You?”: Addressing Racial Ambiguity

Critical Philosophy of Race
Volume 8, Numbers 1-2, 2020
pages 202-307

Céline Leboeuf, Assistant Professor of Philosophy
Florida International University, Miami, Florida

“What are you?” This question, whether explicitly raised by another or implied in his gaze, is one with which many persons perceived to be racially ambiguous struggle. This article centers on encounters with this question. Its aim is twofold: first, to describe the phenomenology of a particular type of racializing encounter, one in which one of the parties is perceived to be racially ambiguous; second, to investigate how these often alienating encounters can be better negotiated. In the course of this investigation, this article examines the addressee’s point of view and consider possible responses to the other’s question. In addition, it discusses the addresser’s perspective, both to probe the curiosity underlying the “What are you?” question and to explore alternatives to it. By describing the phenomenology of these encounters, this article hopes to show that racial ambiguity, as distinct from mixed-race, is a category of lived experience that calls for deeper philosophical scrutiny.

Read or purchase the article here.

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