07 30 2016
  2:18 am  
     •     
read latest

breaking news

The Wake of Vanport
McMenamins
Yaba Blay author

Kam Williams Book Review

(1)ne Drop:Shifting the Lens on RaceEdited by Yaba Blay, Ph.D. with photography by Noelle Theard

What exactly is Blackness and what does it mean to be Black? Is Blackness a matter of biology or consciousness? Who determines who is 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.  

 BLACKprint Press

Hardcover, $40.00

288 pages, Illustrated

ISBN: 978-0-9896645-0-9  

Recently Published by The Skanner News

  • Default
  • Title
  • Date
  • Random
  • Russian hackers likely responsible for hacking attack on Clinton HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Giddy if exhausted, Hillary Clinton embarked on a post-convention Rust Belt bus tour just hours after becoming the first female presidential nominee of a major political party. The celebratory mood quickly evaporated amid fresh revelations that hackers had breached a program used by her campaign and Republican nominee Donald Trump promised to sharpen his barbs. "Remember this," Trump said during a rally Friday in Colorado Springs, Colorado. "Trump is going to be no more Mr. Nice Guy." And for the first time he encouraged his supporters' anti-Clinton chants of "lock her up." "I've been saying let's just beat her on Nov. 8," Trump said, "but you know what? I'm starting to agree with you." About an hour later, Clinton aides acknowledged that a hacking attack that exposed Democratic Party emails also reached into a computer system used by her own campaign. The FBI said it was working to determine the "accuracy, nature and scope" of the cyberattacks. Campaign spokesman Nick Merrill said the newly disclosed breach affected a Democratic National Committee data analytics program used by the campaign and other organizations. Outside experts found no evidence that the campaign's "internal systems have been compromised," Merrill said, but he gave no details on the program or nature of the attacks. Partnerships with modern e-commerce companies can allow sophisticated tracking, categorization and identification of website visitors and voters. President Barack Obama and cybersecurity experts have said Russia was almost certainly responsible for the DNC hack. The House Democratic campaign committee reported Friday that its information had been accessed. The developments followed the leaking of DNC emails earlier in the week that pointed to a pro-Clinton bias by party officials during her primary contest against Bernie Sanders. In the furor that followed, party chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Shultz resigned just as Democrats launched their convention. Clinton and her running mate, Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia, will attempt to return attention to their positive economic message on Saturday, with campaign stops through economically struggling areas of Pennsylvania and Ohio. "When we take that oath of office next January, we know we can make life better. We know we can create more good jobs," she told voters gathered at an outside market in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Clinton cited an economic analysis by economist Mark Zandi, a former economic adviser to 2008 Republican presidential nominee John McCain, that found more than 10 million jobs could be created in her first term if her economic proposals were put in place. Zandi's analysis of Trump's plans found they would cost the country 3.5 million jobs and lead to a "lengthy recession." Joined on the bus tour by her husband, Bill Clinton, Kaine and his wife, Anne Holton, Clinton stopped at a toy and plastics manufacturer in Hatfield, Pennsylvania, where she and Kaine cast Trump as a con artist out for his own gain. "We don't resent success in America but we do resent people who take advantage of others in order to line their own pockets," Clinton said. Trump is also focusing on Ohio and Pennsylvania, two states where he might make headway with blue-collar white men. That group of voters has eluded Clinton and may be a hard sell after a Democratic convention that heavily celebrated racial and gender diversity. Clinton is playing up economic opportunity, diversity and national security. Democrats hammered home those themes this week with an array of politicians, celebrities, gun-violence victims, law enforcement officers and activists of all races and sexual orientation. Their goal is to turn out the coalition of minority, female and young voters that twice elected Obama while offsetting expected losses among the white men drawn to Trump's message. Democrats continued contrasting their optimistic message with the more troubled vision of the state of the nation presented by Trump and others at the GOP convention a week earlier. Kaine called the "very dark and negative" event a "journey through Donald Trump's mind." "That's a very frightening place," he told thousands of supporters in Philadelphia. Clinton told voters that they faced a "stark choice," calling the coming election the most important one in her lifetime. "This is a moment of reckoning for our country. I don't recognize the country that Donald Trump describes," she said.___Lemire reported from Colorado Springs, Colorado. Associated Press writer Eric Tucker in Washington contributed to this report.
    Read More
  • Six current or former state employees were charged Friday with misconduct and other crimes in the Flint water crisis 
    Read More
  • Hillary Clinton cast herself as a unifier for divided times, an experienced leader steeled for a volatile world 
    Read More
  • The Portland Harbor Community Coalition wants a more intensive cleanup and more time for public comment  
    Read More
load morehold SHIFT key to load allload all
Calendar

PHOTO GALLERY

Oregon Shakespeare Festival The Wiz

Hood to Coast 2016