Month: March 2008

March 23, 2008 / / Uncategorized
March 21, 2008 / / Uncategorized

by Racialicious Special Correspondent Latoya Peterson

Why do I always find the best things when I am procrastinating?

Screwing around on an article I am writing, I happened to catch up with Fatemeh, who let me know about a truly fabulous blog, Sex & The Islamic City.

The writer, known as English, paints a gorgeous description of her expat life in Iran:

The cultural life of Tehran is surprisingly rich, with private views of art, secret screenings of controversial documentaries and movies, underground rock concerts, officially sanctioned classical concerts, and even illegal fashion shows on offer almost every night, as long as you know the right people. Alternatively you can get on the party circuit with Tehran’s rich and beautiful, those expensively-suited men and their glossy, whippet thin wives who live in penthouse suites of marble towers or behind the walls of sprawling villas in the north of Tehran in the lap of the mountains. If this isn’t your scene then you can penetrate the circle of foreign journalists, diplomats and NGO workers with their unkempt hair who observe life in the city with a wry detachment always amusing to a girl missing the dry British sense of humour and longing to party in jeans with a face bare of the thick make up that is de rigueur in society here. Read the Post Link Love – Sex and the Islamic City

March 21, 2008 / / Uncategorized

by Racialicious Special Correspondent Latoya Peterson

So, I’ve been watching the flow of this conversation with great interest.

Racial identity is a tricky thing. For some of us, it’s something we were born into, with relatives coaching us into an understanding of our race and how it may work against us in society. Others have to find their own way, as their relatives either can’t or won’t be able to equip them with this knowledge. Coming to an understanding with your racial identity is a difficult process.

And I say this as someone who was indoctrinated into blackness from day one. My mother provided me with piles and piles of books and information to demonstrate how wonderful it was to be black, how big of a burden we carry, and how to recognize your blessings. I was often taken to cultural events based around my blackness, and my mother attacked ideas, historical “fact,” and white beauty standards so that I did not feel inadequate. As a result, I never really felt any problems with identifying as black.

The only friction I felt was when I decided to do something that wasn’t “traditionally black.” But to me, it was a simple matter of having a very narrow definition of blackness that some people choose to adhere to, like they were be paid to police the actions of others. I never had a problem with my blackness – I just decided that I would need to expand the parameters a bit.

For other people, this decision is not quite so simple. I remember a girl who I was in school with from middle school to high school. She was a very nice person, funny and kind. But she acted like being Asian was a curse. She made sure that outside of her name, everything else about her was normal (read: white) and would not talk about anything that had to do with her culture or her parents. I am sure that was a kind of survival tactic. A few months back, I looked her up online and saw that her page was covered in Korean pop stars, she had Korean hip-hop booming, and her tagline was “100% Korean!”

I had mentioned this to Hae and she confirmed this was a common experience.

“In high school, you just want to fit in,” she said. “A lot of people embrace their identity after it is over.” Read the Post Grand Theft Racial Identity: Who Gets to Define You?

March 20, 2008 / / Uncategorized
March 20, 2008 / / Uncategorized
March 20, 2008 / / Uncategorized
March 19, 2008 / / Uncategorized

by Racialicious Special Correspondent Latoya Peterson

Just a quick follow up on an older post, as I noticed something of interest.

Of the thirteen comments on the Glamour article we spoke about a bit earlier, two were made by Native Americans:

Feb 26, 2008 8:12:59 PM
katurtle says:
I would first like to say, Hurah for putting yet another race-loving-be-yourself-being-black-is-beautiful idea out into the world. People need to know that, when it comes to different races, there are different styles and natural things that come with being said race. No, I am not raciest, however, I am not black, asian, or hispanic. And I would like to say, given all this “minorities are important and we need to stop racism” stuff that is out in the world, many Americans are forgetting the smallest minority, in my opinion the most important (seeing as I am in this minority.) of all. Native Americans, we have been on this beautiful land the longest, I’m sorry if I offend others, but we have been the most shunned apon, and down-casted race in America. Look up the trail of tears, how many of my people have been killed for this land, we don’t even get recognition. I think it is high time everyone stopped thinking Blacks are the only minority, becasue to be honest they aren’t even a minority anymore. Look how many black people are in this country, how many times people think they need to stand up and be heard, blacks are the most popular and heard of minority in the world. Forgive me, but I think Native Americans deserve to have collums in magazine’s dedicated to their hair, we need articles about how living on a reservation and being one of the poorest races has affected us. Do you know all that Native Americans have been put through, does anyone, No, and it is time we are thought of, it is time I get tips on how to make my hair shine(not that it needs to, it is Native American after all). I have never been able to take any of the tips in magazines and put them to use. Sure every other race gets their say, but what about us. It’s time Blacks step down from thier thrown, it is time they get over the horrible treatment they have endured 200 years ago and let us be heard.

Read the Post Glamour Magazine Article Follow Up: Race in the Comments

March 19, 2008 / / Uncategorized