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The Multiracial Identity

(Cross posted at Say: Reader Blogs.)

This is an interesting listen, Multiracial Identity in America Today.
Led by mixed race celebrities like Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) and Tiger Woods, race, culture and identity are changing in America. Is being multi-racial an identity all its own, or a delicate balance of old divides?

Orin Starn, cultural anthropologist at Duke University

Debra Dickerson, author of The End of Blackness

Sundee Frazier, author of Check All That Apply: Finding Wholeness as a Multiracial Person

There's not much angst in our house about what racial category the kids belong to. We've fallen into taking an "all of the above" approach when necessary. If a form that we have to fill out doesn't allow for checking multiple boxes we leave it blank or check multiple boxes anyway. On one occasion we pointed out that the categories available where in adequate for accurately describing our children.

I have no idea how others choose to categorize them and that's not important to me. I haven't got time for those of the "pick one" mentality who go on to criticize individuals if they don't make the "right" choice. What gives them the authority to impose their preferences for how one should choose a racial category on others?

In any case, I think the rise of a multiracial population in America that wants to recognize the fullness of its heritage will turn our current system of racial categorization on its head. Their prominence will illuminate the arbitrary and fluid nature of the boundaries between racial groups. It will be entertaining to watch.


  1. .
    Someone needs to inform the staff at NPR
    that the 'Multiracial Movement' was NOT
    and have NEVER been "led by celebrities".
    The 'Multiracial Movement' IS and have
    ALWAYS been a grassroots-movement.
    Also, here are good 'reference' Links for
    everyone who refuses to accept the vile
    views of the racist-'One-Drop Rule' (ODR):


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