Half and Half: Writers on Growing Up Biracial and Bicultural
As we approach the twenty-first century, biracialism and biculturalism are becoming increasingly common. Skin color and place of birth are no longer reliable signifiers of one's identity or origin. Simple questions like What are you? and Where are you from? aren't answered--they are discussed.
How do you measure someone's race or culture? Half this, quarter that, born here, raised there. What name do you give that? These eighteen essays, joined by a shared sense of duality, address both the difficulties of not fitting into and the benefits of being part of two worlds. Danzy Senna parodies the media's fascination with biracials in a futuristic piece about the mulatto millennium. Garrett Hongo writes about watching his mixed-race children play in a sea of blond hair and white faces, realizing that suburban Oregon might swallow up their unique racial identity. Francisco Goldman shares his frustration with having constantly to explain himself in terms of his Latino and Jewish roots. Malcolm Gladwell understands that being biracial frees him from racial discrimination but also holds him hostage to questions of racial difference. For Indira Ganesan, India and its memory are evoked by the aromas of foods.
Through the lens of personal experience, these essays offer a broader spectrum of meaning for race and culture. And in the process, they map a new ethnic terrain that transcends racial and cultural division.
From the Hardcover edition.
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - sanguinity - LibraryThing
Lovely, lovely anthology. The editor did a superb job of collecting a diverse sampling of experiences and writing styles -- at no point does one feel that one has gotten the general drift of the ... Read full review
A WHITE WOMAN OF COLORJulia Álvarez
A MIDDLE PASSAGEPhilippe Wamba
FOOD AND THE IMMIGRANTIndira Ganesan
WHAT COLOR IS JESUS?James McBride
POSTCARDS FROM HOMELori Tsang
FROM HERE TO POLANDNina Mehta
AN ETHNIC TRUMPGish Jen
LIFE AS AN ALIENMeri NanaAma Danquah
LOST IN THE MIDDLEMalcolm Gladwell
THE FUNERAL BANQUETLisa See
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
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accent African American Asian American asked Aunt Bessie Ballygunge began bicultural born boys brother child China Chinese Chinese American Chinese Jamaican color conversation cousin culture Danzy Senna Dar es Salaam daughter didn’t Dominican Eddie Thompson English ethnic face father father’s feel felt friends funeral girl grandmother grandmother’s grandparents grew Gujarati hair heritage Hollywood identity immigrants Indian Jamaican Japanese American Jewish kids Kikongo knew language Latino laugh learned listening lived look Madrid married mestizo Mexican mixed moro mother mother’s movie mulatto neighborhood never night one’s parents play questions race racial racism realized remember Robin Quivers Samantha seemed sense side sister skin Spanish speak story talking Tanzania tell there’s things thought told took trying uncle Vietnam wasn’t wife woman words writer York Zairean