Google+

Shifting the Lens on Race

 

(1)ne Drop:

51DBH+gzOuLShifting the Lens on Race

Edited by Yaba Blay, Ph.D.

with photography by Noelle Theard

BLACKprint Press

Hardcover, $40.00

288 pages, Illustrated

ISBN: 978-0-9896645-0-9

 

Book Review by Kam Williams

 

“What exactly is Blackness and what does it mean to be Black? Is Blackness a matter of biology or consciousness? Who determines whoyabais Black and who is not—the state, the society, or the individual? Who is Black, who is not, and who cares?

In the U.S., historically a Black person has come to be defined as any person with any known Black ancestry. This definition has been… known as the one-drop rule, meaning that one, single solitary drop of Black blood is enough to render a person black…

(1)ne Drop seeks to challenge narrow perceptions of Blackness as both an identity and a lived reality… [The book] takes the very literal position that, in order for us to see Blackness differently, we have to see Blackness differently.”

— Excerpted from the Introduction (pg. 4)

 

Traditionally, in America, if you were just a teeny-weeny bit black, you’d always been considered black. This arbitrary color line was even codified by the Supreme Court decision in Plessy v. Ferguson, an 1896 case brought by an octoroon light enough to pass who sued for the right to sit in the “white only” section of a segregated train traveling through the South.

Much to Homer Plessy’s chagrin, the Court sided with the State of Louisiana, taking judicial notice of the “one-drop rule,” ruling that “a Negro or black is any person with any black ancestry.” In other words, you could be black without looking black.

Fast-forward to the present, the arguably post-racial age of Obama, a time when the country has a biracial president, who nevertheless refers to himself to African-American. The nation’s population has more mixed ancestry than ever nowadays, which is reflected in the latest census offering over a dozen race options to check off, as well as “Other,” if none of the above is to your liking.

This means that folks, who only a generation ago would’ve been forced to identify themselves simply as black, now feel much more freedom to avail themselves of an array of alternatives along the ethnic spectrum. (1)ne Drop: Shifting the Lens on Race is a collection of essays reflecting on racial identity by 60 introspective individuals who until relatively recently would’ve been labeled black in the eyes of the law.

This enlightening opus was edited by Dr. Yaba Blay, a professor of Africana Studies at Drexel University, and each contributor’s entry is accompanied by a proud portrait photographed by Noelle Theard, a professor at Florida International University. The book breaks down the contributors by three categories: “Mixed Black,” “American Black” and “Diaspora Black.”

Although “Black” Kathleen Cross has a black father and a white mother, she has resisted the invitations to join the “Multiracial Movement, which she sees as divisive. By contrast, Harlemite Jozen Cummings describes himself as “Mixed,” with parents who are Japanese, Puerto Rican and African-American.

Particularly fascinating are the two albinos participating in the project, Sean Gethers and Destiny Birdsong, who embrace being “Black” in spite of their white skin. Each person’s earnest explanation proves to be rather revealing and touching, leaving the lasting impression that in the 21st Century blackness is no longer defined by the government but by the eye of the selfie.

To order a copy of (1)ne Drop: Shifting the Lens on Race, visit: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0989664503/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20

 

,

Entertainment

Top Ten DVD List for January 24, 2016

  This Week’s DVD Releases by Kam Williams Top Ten DVD List for January 24, 2016     Ixcanul https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B01N904BV0/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20 Peanuts by Schulz: Snoopy Tales http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B01MYOEY76/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20 The Man Who Fell to Earth [Limited Collector's Edition] https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN//B01LTHWY0G/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20 The Code: … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Books

Concerned Father Creates Children’s Book Series To Help Make Learning About Valuable Black History Information Fun Again

  Concerned Father Creates Children's Book Series To Help Make Learning About Valuable Black History Information Fun Again   Orlando, FL (January 16, 2017) – EOTO Books & Publishing announced today the immediate release of “The Christopher OluFela Series of Books for Kids” written by father and creative children’s picture book author Lee Chavous. The books take a unique approach to inform young readers of a rich African American … [Read More its Good for You...]

Art

The Day After the Day Of

  The Day After the Day Of by Paul Ilechko   The sky sheds its tears. This morning is the morning of the day after. The day of mourning, the day after the day of.  I beseech the sky to shed tears in order to wash away the tears on my face.   This is the first day of the time after. This is the beginning of a new time, the days of pain, the days of sorrow. We are in mourning. The sky looks down and sheds its tears for … [Read More its Good For You...]

Real Estate

History Being Sold to the Highest Bidder

  History Being Sold to the Highest Bidder by Amy Lignor   For the longest time, scientists and archaeologists have been confused and bemused by various discoveries they’ve unearthed that offer little or no explanation as to the who, what, and why of the people who created these things or left them behind. Even now, in 2017, there are discoveries being studied; stories that were once legends now have actual bits of proof being found that … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Lifestyle

The Dreams from Obama’s America

  The Dreams from Obama's America Dinesh Sharma Source: Dinesh Sharma Obama will be remembered as one of the greatest political orators of our times. His soaring rhetoric that swooned the audience in 2004 in Boston (There's not a black America and white America and Latino America and Asian America; there's the United States of America.[1]), not too far from where the patriots fired the opening salvo of the American Revolution, was on … [Read More its Good for You...]

Outdoors

Carolina Skiff at Miami’s Favorite Boat Show

  Carolina Skiff at Miami's Favorite Boat Show By Craig Lamb You might say “new” is a reoccurring theme of Miami’s favorite boat show coming up soon. A new location with hundreds of new boats, including never-before-seen models being debuted by Carolina Skiff, is a great way to kick off the season. Few boat shows offer buyers the chance to see new boats where they ultimately belong—floating on the water in a real time setting. You can … [Read More its Good for You...]

Sports

Can Troy Aikman Win MVP?

  Can Troy Aikman Win MVP? by Amy Lignor   What a strange title for an article, aye? Of course the ‘old man’ of the Dallas Cowboys can’t win MVP. Troy Aikman was an elite QB, with three Super Bowl rings to prove that fact. However, Aikman hasn’t actually suited-up since leaving behind his Cowboys uniform in 2001. The number one overall draft pick in 1989, Aikman was the MVP of Super Bowl XXVII, and was elected to the Pro Football … [Read More its Good for You...]

Business

Spotlight on Africa

  Spotlight on Africa by Amy Lignor   As the year winds down and comes to a close, it is Africa that is receiving some headlines that call for many changes and improvements to be made in the coming years. It was Ambassador Amina Mohamed (Nairobi, Kenya) that spoke recently about the African Union Commission (AUC) and how the group must provide leadership in the coming years. After all, the nation of Africa is, in truth, the cradle … [Read More its Good for You...]

Travel

The Grandest New Year’s Celebrations Around the World

    The Grandest New Year’s Celebrations Around the World by Amy Lignor   Oh, yes…there are many, many places to travel in order to ring in that New Year in style. Some people have already stated that they see 2017 becoming one of the ‘best of the best’ years the world has ever seen – from technology to business to education to even “going greener” – heck, green has even been chosen as the top color of 2017. But where should you … [Read More its Good for You...]

Green Living

After 89 Years This “Mouse” Still Works Overtime

  After 89 Years This “Mouse” Still Works Overtime by Amy Lignor   For those who are unaware, Mickey Mouse is one year away from turning 90 years of age. Created in 1928 by the lovable Walt Disney, this character continues to bring happiness and joy to kids and families all around the world. Through depressions, national tragedies, and more drama than anyone can name, Mickey Mouse and the Walt Disney Company survived and is still, to … [Read More its Good for You...]