Announcements

An Important Blog: “Mixed Race Studies,” moderated by Steven F. Riley

Note From Vikki Bynum, Renegade South Moderator: After discovering the blog Mixed Race Studies, I asked its moderator, Steven F. Riley, to submit a guest post telling Renegade South readers more about it. His post follows:


Mixed Race Studies (http://www.mixedracestudies.org/wordpress/) is a non-commercial website that  provides a gateway to contemporary interdisciplinary (sociology, psychology, history, law, etc.) English language scholarship about the relevant issues surrounding the topic of multiracialism.

The goals of the site are to:

*   Provide visitors with links to books, articles, dissertations, multimedia and any other resources to enabled them to further their (and my) knowledge on the topic.

*   Remind visitors that so-called “racial mixing” has been occurring in the Americas for over five centuries and in fact, all of the founding nations of the Americans were mixed-race societies at their inception.

*   Ultimately support a vision of the irrelevance of race.

I created the site in April 2009 in recognition of our family members and friends who are ‘mixed-race’ and/or raising ‘mixed-race’ children, in response the growing number self-identifying ‘mixed-race’ living here in the Washington, DC area, and finally in celebration of my interracial marriage to my loving wife of 15 years.

In supporting the vision of the irrelevance of race, I’ve been forced to ask myself the following questions.

*   Is the ideal of no racial distinction a possibility?

*   Does mixed race identity continue the racial hierarchy/paradigm or does it change it?

*   Will the acknowledgement and study of multiraciality help or hinder a goal of a post-racial future?

*   Will the sheer volume of mixed race people provoke change?

*   …But if everybody has been mixed already and our racial paradigm hasn’t changed in the last 400 years, what do we make of the changes in these last 40 years?

*   And what changes can we expect in the next 40?

If you are interested in discovering more, please visit  http://www.mixedracestudies.org/wordpress/ .

Steven F. Riley

10 replies »

  1. Hi Steven,

    I’ve been exploring your website and in the the process have obtained great satisfaction. It’s always a treat to learn new facts, acquire more knowledge of subjects dear to one’s heart.

    Thus, your website has provided me with this opportunity. Thank you! And many thanks, too, to Vikki Bynum and her great blog! So many good writers and people throughly knowledgeable about a particular subject matter post on this blog.

    Little personal history here.

    I am the mother of a bi-racial son. (Jamie Kimbrough) Jamie was born in San Diego in 1966. His birth certificate allowed me three choices in which to note my race and that of his father.
    White, Negro and what is referred today as Asian. Thus, I checked off White for me, and Negro for his father. A short while later, a Nurse Rachett type came into my hospital room for the sole purpose of admonishing me for citing his father as a “Negro”. She pointedly told me that she had seen hundreds of negro and white babies and my son was definitely the son of a white man! Furthermore, she went on to say, that by my falsely abusing a legal document I would be doing my son a grave injustice for the rest of his life since I had cited his father’s race as Negro. Thus, I replied. “Look lady, I was there at the time of his conception. You weren’t! I had a few other words to say (unfit to print) before inviting her to take her leave.

    Note here: Jamie absolutely LOVES his bi-racial heritiage! And always has. When the TV series ‘Roots” appeared, c 1978, Jamie proudly boasted that he was a descendant of an African chief. (As told to him by his father). A mother of one of his friends rang me up to tell me that Jamie was telling everyone that he was part African and she knew that I would want to know this so that I could admonish him for making such an outlandish claim. I took great pleasure in verifing that Jamie had this right. And that should she ever need an excellent dentist, Jamie’s father would be happy to see her as a patient.

    Today, there is an school in San Diego named ‘Kimbrough Elementary School’, in honor of Jamie’s father who was also a local Civil Rights leader. Today, only a very few people who meet Jamie conclude that he’s bi-racial. (Those that do, are all either bi-racial or identify themselves as African-American.) Mostly, however, he has to make this claim before people can recognize his bi-racial heritage. And those who know this think it’s GREAT! Like really cool! Only one of Jamie’s former girl friends had parents who objected to their daughter dating him. Why? Because they were Greek and only approved of their daughter dating other Greeks, that’s why.

    Again, thanks so very much for your GREAT website, Steven. You are to be greatly commended for vastly aiding us all in understanding various and sundry racial paradigms. You’ve provided a real service!

    Vikky (Wilburn) Anders in San Diego

  2. I am an Anglo-Indian, of French/Indian/Portuguese/ descent. The Anglo-Indian community, though very small is recognized in the Indian Constitution and we also have nominations to parliament as well as State legislatures.

    I edit a journal called “The International Journal of Anglo-Indian Studies which can be found on ‘theanglo-indianwebpage’. Ther lists of our journals and dissertations etc can be found. The site belongs to Dr Adrian Gilbert who started it in 1996. I have been editor since 2010 and have brought out 4 journals, 8 actually counting the Anglo-Indian Wallah, which is the fiction journal, which I also have edited since 2010. I find your site very usefil. I also came across JSTOR and have asked them how I can become a member so that I can read full articles on that site. The work done by you and other scholars of mixed-race studies is very useful and indeed illuminating. I read them with so much enthusiasm. Thanks for this great gift.

    Susan

  3. I forgot to mention that I am married to a Hindu brahmin, which makes my two children a thorough mix of so many differences, religion, language, community etc. Though they have chosen to be more westernized, which is the hallmark of the Anglo-Indian community and speak the language that we speak at home (English) and do not really know Marathi which is my husband’s mother-tongue, they neverthelless identify themselves as Maharashtrian (from the State of Maharashtra and Marathi speaking!). They do not follow any religion at all, and now, having lived in America for some twelve years, they are beginning to strongly identify with American culture, at the same time enjoying their Indian connection. Now, my daughter who is married to a Bengali (and both speak English), has a daughter who is further well-mixed but has an Indian name, no religion but speaks English with a pronounced American accent. This is indeed a fascinating subject. I read the aims you outline and it gave excellent food for thought along those lines.

    Susan

    • Very interesting! Your description of your family’s mixture of cultural traditions reminds me of an article by Bharati Mukherjee in the September 2011 issue of More magazine. Thank you again for visiting Renegade South, where we try to recognize cultural syncretism within the South itself.

      Vikki

    • Dear Susan,
      I’ve been asked by my friend Nigel Eling, to get in touch with you and ask for your telephone number. He says he is not sure he has met you, but he knew your father, the illustrious IAF Air Chief Marshall, from way back in 1947 or thereabouts, when they were both trainees in the Air Force. Besides, your grandfather and Nigel’s father, were both doctors, and contemporaries in the army, which takes the family relationship a good one hundred years, or so, into the past.

      Nigel read a piece you had written as a tribute to your father, and was so moved by it that he desperately wants to speak to you from Canada. He has a computer, gifted him by his granddaughter who also offered to teach him how to use it, but he regards the machine with deep suspicion and uses it only to listen to old-time tunes; never for e-mail. So, if you would like to hear from him, do let me have your phone number, and I shall forward it to him.

      My e-mail address is pesi.padshah@gmail.com and my phone number is 020-40046331.

      Sincerely,
      Pesi Padshah

  4. I was so pleased to be contacted through this site. I do love the work I do and keep hoping that the journals will grow in strength and be reviewed by as many as possible because the contributors are interesting professionals who enrich this debate on mixed-race. THANK YOU for your appreciation and I do hope you can find a bit of time to access the journals yourself and laso thank you for your own important work, Vikki.

    Regards

    Susan

    • Susan,

      I’m so pleased that you enjoyed the correspondence posted for you. I will try and access the journals; thanks for the reminder. And, of course, I appreciate your good words about my own work.

      Vikki

  5. Steven F. Riley will not post my work on his site. He also strives to eliminate the work of Susan Graham of Project RACE, Charles Michael Byrd and other associated with Interracial Voice. His intent seems to be to write us out of the history of the movement so hypodescent will not be challenged.

  6. AD Powell: I am aware that you and Steven Riley have profound differences of opinion. I have never known Steven to dispute any challenges to theories of hypodescent, however, and, in any case, he is welcome on this site. You, of course, are as well.

    Vikki Bynum

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