News Roundup: Challenging Our Perceptions of What Should Be When It Comes to Race

challenging our perceptionsIn this week’s Multiracial News RoundUp, TaRessa Stovall is challenging our perceptions of what “should be” when it comes to race.

Challenging Our Perceptions: Does a Biracial Woman Qualify to Win a Miss Black Pageant?

When Rachael Malonson, a Black/White Biracial journalism student at the University of Texas was chosen as Miss Black UT by the African American Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity, some questioned her qualifications.

Malsonson told ABC, she had her own questions about being eligible to participate despite being half-Black. “’I don’t fit the stereotypical look that you would think a black person would fit,’” said Malonson. “’Someone literally asked me, ‘Are you black? Can you prove it to me?’”

As she shared on social media, “Throughout the process I gained perseverance, a greater understanding of who I am as a person, and received constant support from others even when I didn’t believe in myself. I challenged myself by vulnerably expressing obstacles I face as a biracial woman … “

challenging our perceptionsAfter making big headlines, Malonson took to the Daily Dot to explain why she is “Black enough to be Miss Black University of Texas. Read More

Challenging Our Perceptions: Artist Transforms Herself to Explore Mixed Race Identity

Genevieve Gaignard, a Black/White artist who self-identifies as a Mixed race woman of color, creatively explores and presents the subject of identity—especially the African-American experience, which is at the center of her life and her work. She admits that with her very light skin and voluptuous build, she has “often felt invisible” while struggling to find where she belonged.

As Konibi.com reports, “Gaignard’s humorous, introspective and pop-culture laden self-portraits and installations bring a myriad of colorful fictional female characters to life through kitschy costumes, props and campy stages that embody stereotypes put forth by the media and question the notion of identity’s many layers.” Read More

Challenging Our Perceptions: The Evolving Faces—and Hearts—of Today’s Swirling Couples 

In honor of the 50th anniversary of Loving v. Virginia making swirling nuptials legal in all 50 states, the popular dating site OK Cupid features adorable profiles of four interracial couples that are as diverse as they are romantic. Check ‘em out

New Cartoon Princess Challenges Our Perceptions of Traditional Racial & Gender Constraints

Looks like Nickelodeon children’s TV is moving into the traditionally Disney-dominated cartoon princess category with a fresh twist with rule-bending Nella. As the New York Times reports, “The self-empowered Nella pushes boundaries, at least for television aimed at 2-year-olds, in the areas of race and gender. She is biracial, with a black father and a white mother, a decision informed by Nickelodeon research indicating that most children under 12 will be nonwhite by 2020 and that already 17 percent are biracial. The character also mashes together traditional boy and girl gender norms.

“Nella may ride a unicorn with a pink mane (à la My Little Pony), but she does it while brandishing a sword and wearing knight gear, a bit like a preschool version of Brienne of Tarth from “Game of Thrones.” She is a girlie girl but does traditional boy activities (battling a dragon) and does not spend the majority of her time in a ball gown.” Read More

The Problem with “Colorblind” Love

The long-popular notion of claiming racial and ethnic “color-blindness” is challenged as more harmful than helpful to any notions of true progress and equality.

In response to a statement about a White woman hoping her family would be “colorblind” when she brought her Black beau to meet them,” Ebony.com responded the “colorblind” has “come to represent post-racial progress, but truth be told, it’s a truly unsophisticated goal that’s complete and utter bullsh*t … When White people propagate the notion of colorblindness, it has come to mean, ‘I will ignore your skin color because if I see it, I’ll probably dislike you. Instead, I will be blind to your melanin so I can actually treat you the way I naturally treat other White people.’”

There are many people of all races who will read this as being unfair … Read More

Rather than decide what must be because we’re so accustomed to it, let’s instead challenge our perceptions…

Photo credit: Rachael Malonson’s Twitter page.

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