The Promise and Pitfalls of Multiracial Cyberspace

Posted in Media Archive, Papers/Presentations, Social Science on 2009-10-07 01:57Z by Steven The Promise and Pitfalls of Multiracial Cyberspace

Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association
Atlanta Hilton Hotel
Atlanta, Georgia
27  pages

Erica Childs, Assistant Professor
Department of Sociology
Hunter College at the City University of New York

Through the Internet, multiracial individuals and families, even those who have felt isolated in racially segregated communities, can transcend geographically defined communities just by clicking and typing.  Type “multiracial” in any search engine and hundreds of results will be given, identifying the varied websites that exist.  Surfing through these sites from individual webpages of interracial couples to larger sites, it becomes clear that these sites are not detached and separate but rather form an intricate web, connected by links. These websites are an instrumental part of the multiracial movement.

The promise and potential of multiracial cyberspace is that it does provide a multiracial community and network, an “imagined” community among the specific assemblage of linked sites and web browsers not bound by geographical boundaries where most of the members may never meet though “in the minds of each lives the image of their communion.” Y et the Internet mirrors the larger society in that websites and web publications are often racialized, primarily geared towards one racial group or community thereby reinforcing the color line. Likewise multiracial websites exist on the color line, with a few challenging the racial status quo by bringing together all races, while most simply reproduce the racial hierarchy by further demarcating a separate multiracial community. This paper explores the significance of these “multiracial” websites, the ideologies they support, and their role in the multiracial movement. The images and ideas they project about multiracialism and racial politics is addressed. In particular the ways that these websites attempt to construct a multiracial community and promote a particular type of multiracial identity is highlighted.

Read the entire paper here.

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The Politics of Multiracialism: Challenging Racial Thinking

Posted in Anthologies, Books, Census/Demographics, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2009-09-27 23:39Z by Steven

The Politics of Multiracialism: Challenging Racial Thinking

State University of New York Press
June 2004
263 pages
Hardcover ISBN-10: 0-7914-6153-X; ISBN-13: 978-0-7914-6153-2
Paperback ISBN-10: 0-7914-6154-8; ISBN13: 978-0-7914-6154-9


Heather M. Dalmage, Professor of Sociology and Director
Mansfield Institute for Social Justice
Roosevelt University

A provocative analysis of current thought and discourse on multiracialism.

This is the first book to critically look at the political issues and interests surrounding the broadly defined Multiracial Movement and at what is being said about multiracialism. Many of the multiracial family organizations that exist across the United States developed socially, ideologically, and politically during the conservative Reagan years. While members of the Multiracial Movement differ widely in their political views, the concept of multiracialism has been taken up by conservative politicians in ways that are often inimical to the interests of traditionally defined minorities.

Contributors look at the Multiracial Movement’s voice and at the political controversies that attend the notion of multiracialism in academic and popular literature, internet discourse, census debates, and discourse by and about pop culture celebrities. The work discusses how multiracialism, hybridity, and racial mixing have occurred amidst existing academic discussions of authenticity, community borders, identity politics, the social construction of race, and postmodern fragmentation. How the Multiracial Movement is shaping and transforming collective multiracial identities is also explored.

Contributors include Erica Chito Childs, Kimberly McClain DaCosta, Heather M. Dalmage, Abby L. Ferber, Charles A. Gallagher, Terri A. Karis, Rebecca Chiyoko King-O’Riain, Kerry Ann Rockquemore, Barbara Katz Rothman, Rainier Spencer, Eileen T. Walsh, and Kim M. Williams.

Table of Contents

Part One: Context of the Multiracial Movement

1. All in the Family: The Familial Roots of Racial Divisions
Kimberly McClain DaCosta

2. Defending the Creation of Whiteness: White Supremacy and the Threat of Interracial Sexuality
Abby L. Ferber

3. Racial Redistricting: Expanding the Boundaries of Whiteness
Charles A. Gallagher

4. Linking the Civil Rights and Multiracial Movements
Kim M. Williams

Part Two: Discourses of the Multiracial Movement

5. Beyond Pathology and Cheerleading: Insurgency, Dissolution, and Complicity in the Multiracial Idea
Rainier Spencer

6. Deconstructing Tiger Woods: The Promise and Pitfalls of Multiracial Identity
Kerry Ann Rockquemore

7. Multiracial Cyberspace
Erica Chito Childs

8. “I Prefer to Speak of Culture”: White Mothers of Multiracial Children
Terri A. Karis

Part Three: Lessons from the Multiracial Movement

9. Model Majority? The Struggle for Identity among Multiracial Japanese Americans
Rebecca Chiyoko King-O’Riain

10. Transracial Adoption: Refocusing Upstream
Barbara Katz Rothman

11. Protecting Racial Comfort, Protecting White Privilege
Heather M. Dalmage

12. Ideology of the Multiracial Movement: Dismantling the Color Line and Disguising White Supremacy?
Eileen T. Walsh

List of Contributors


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