A condensed history of multiracial identification in the United States

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, History, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2021-12-08 16:33Z by Steven

A condensed history of multiracial identification in the United States


Caitlin Gilbert, Jasmine Mithani, Lakshmi Sarah, and Kaitlyn Wells

(Image by rawpixel.com / Freepik)

How to write about mixed and multiracial people, Part 1

Mixed-race identity is chic right now: Our fictionalized stories are bestsellers, and public figures such as Naomi Osaka and Kamala Harris are a regular part of the national conversation. Heck, we’ve even made the news as one of the fastest-growing populations in the 2020 United States Census. As our identities have become trendy and more journalists seek to write about our experiences, it’s important that they respect what we have to say and honor who we are.

We multiracial people reject many assumptions, generalizations and categories. We are not a monolith, and we may even disagree on the terms multiracial versus mixed. Yet this is who we are—we’re both and neither, and our identities can be fluid depending on context.

When it comes to writing about mixed-race and multiracial people, it is critical to understand the historical context behind the terms, learn how to speak to sources and write about them, and examine any bias throughout the journalistic process. To help journalists produce nuanced reporting about mixed-race and multiracial people we’ve compiled a two-part guide based on our SRCCON 2021 presentation, “When ‘Check One’ Does Not Apply: Covering and Being Mixed Race in Journalism.”

In this article, we are going to review an abbreviated history of mixed-race people in the United States. If you are looking for a reporting guide, please see our companion article: Guidelines for reporting on multiracial people

Read the entire article here.

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