The study of critical mixed theory is not only a complex field of study, but also a field that must be examined in a multidimensional view. The mixed race theory entangles itself with political, social, and economic implication in the study of racial identities and the ‘race problem’. People with a multiracial background may experience difficulties in identifying with a particular class of people. This is because racial identities give a person the sense of belongingness. Moreover, one tends to develop a sense of self that is crucial to self-acceptance. However, even where there is a defined mixed race, a sense of belongingness can only be realized if the social and political ambiences are in harmony.
The studies of multiracial identities reveal an overwhelming volume of literature that compares and contracts monoracial persons to multiracial individuals. Multiracial persons have been classified as belonging to amorphous multi-racial groups. Despite this classification, there are disparities as to the social identification of multiracial with these categories that they are identified with. This is because the mixed race theory fails to take into account personal experiences and multiracial person actually interpret them. The theory focuses on establishing a blanket experience and simply identifies them as multiracial. This paper will illustrate the extent of race validation using blacks and whites within Canada. The paper appreciates the presence of racial discrimination, profiling and other challenges faced by people of a mixed race who have neither black nor white descent. However, for purposes of clarity, the paper elects to unique phenomenon presented by the biracial race of white-black in Canada.
It is vital to comprehend that, social and political context have an extremely significant influence in shaping racial identity. This is because it from within a society that a person lives that determines the person’s perspective and view of life. A society has an extremely significant influence on a school of thought of a person and it upon recognition of how crucial such influence is to a person, that researches have adopted a same perspective. For example, there still exist some disparities between whites and blacks in Canada. However, it is also true that racial profiling has reduced significantly over the past few decades. Whites, blacks, Hispanics among others have interacted freely in residential places and working environments. It is also true that there are some areas within Canada that are completed occupied by one race. Such racial composition is critical in determining and influencing how a person feels. This means that within some social or/and political contest a black person may feel too ‘black’ while in some he or she may not even realize the color of his or her skin. This is also vice versa to white people. If a white person lives in an area that is totally flooded with black folks, he or she may feel alienated and feel being too white while the same person may not have such feelings if he were among fellow white people of in a mixed race society. There has been an extensive debate whether race should be construed as a biological concept or as a social concept. This is especially in relations to multiracial persons who have no clear relations to a specific race. However, this is also a subjective area of study as it is heavily influenced by personal preferences and experiences in defining one’s self concept. It is also cardinal to canvas how much others understand a person because it can be critical on how the identity of a person is defined to them. For example, how members of a family understand a person, in most cases, varies with how they may understand a stranger. This, therefore, shapes and regulates how the identity of the person under study is showcased to the other people. If a family member is conscience of his or her race in a peculiar way, such a person tends to understand in the same way members of his family. However, he or she may not be able to perceive how a strange identifies oneself with his race category despite express external features that can be used for inference. This is because, in the contemporary world, mixed race theory has metamorphosed to a significant extend that skin color is no longer a reference point to how one feels about his or her race. There are also many cases of adopted race identities. The question is whether the person adopting the identity usually accepts it. Moreover, there is also debate on how the society relates to such people and how they refer to them with regard to race. Social validation is a significant factor that can heavily influence how a person feels about his race. Such factors, inter alia, complicate the classification of race identities and multiracial experiences. By subscribing to this broad, unique and comprehensive perspective, one can then challenge the fundamental assumption propagated by some mixed race theorist that attaches being multiracial to a singular meaning. It also seeks to support the concept that there are numerous categories of racial identities that one can associate him or herself with, and that multiraciality should be examined beyond being black, white or colored.
Adapting such a broad perspective of racial identities enables one to examine all essential aspects of a person who is influenced, partly or wholly, by political or social factors. This is also cardinal min order to establish how multiracial perceive themselves with regard to race, how they integrate within their multiple identities and how one can organized, racially, their own self concept with regard to validation and acceptable within the society. In some cases, they may be cases of either conflicting or complimenting identities. This is because biracial persons may feel that their two distinct social/race identities are oppositional or compatible. This is heavily dependent on a person’s background, upbringing, and affiliations among other social and political factors. Therefore, it is vital to underscore the significance of identity integration. To determine this one has to canvas the measure or the extent to which such conflicting racial interests can be compatible or otherwise. This is the ideal analysis to examine a person with multiracial identities integrate by accepting these identities. It is also applicable in reference to other social/racial identities. Closely related to this observable phenomenon and an essential part of indent integration is the degree of integration of a person as he transfers from one situation to another. This consistent of maintaining a single identity will demonstrate successful identity integration. There are various other aspects of identity integration that are worth noting. These include the self-concept, internal consistent, self-beliefs, personal stability and the structure of the self. These factors inter alia are crucial in determining the extent, degree or measure of influence of any social/political factors following a person’s association with regard to racial identities.
It is upon the realization and recognition that multiracial people have more than one racial identity to associate themselves with, according to mixed race theory, that it is cardinal to note the various ways in which such people can coordinate their different racial identities. In a nut shell, this discussion is premised on the presumption that race identities are and should be regarded as being fluid and dynamic in nature. They should not be treated as fixed immutable because it not only extremely hard to draw the line between one identity and another, but also not desirable in practice when one is carrying out empirical tests. This is because as discussed above there is more to identities than being merely ‘black’ or ‘white’. For example, a Canadian immigration officer referred a person of mixed race as bringing racial impurity to the country. This was an unfortunate statement as it seeks to promote the discriminatory policies of Canada. It is also possible for a certain person to subscribe to the perspectives that racial identities can be shifting in relation to experiences and that a person can have multiples of racial identities simultaneously or have no have identity at some point. In pursuit of this logic of thought, the ideal observable phenomenon of study is the typical experiences availed by white-black multiracial people.
A biracial parson has the option of having a monoracial identity. This is can also be referred to as the singular identity option. These are people with origins from different races but choose association with a single race. They choose a self-identity from one of the parent and seek to only associated or become influenced by the doctrines of such a race. They develop a monoracial understanding and a sense of self-identity that is exclusively dependent on one race. Studies carried out by different researchers among the African American population living in Canada who have a white-black multiracial, a significant number of respondents are reported to have adopted a monoracial identity. While others viewed themselves as blacks, there were numerous others who thought themselves to be white. Such a phenomenon can only rely on the association of such individual with the philosophical approaches of the social and political contexts. This means that a person’s background, for example, a biracial (white-black) person who has been raised and lives in a black neighbor that has deep resentment against the white community, will identify him or herself with an ‘exclusively black’ monoracial identity. It is worth noting that Canadian government policies appear to favor or present ‘privileges’ to white people. This explains why most biracial people what to associate themselves as whites to escape discrimination.
A person can also elect to adopt an exclusively biracial identity. This is one’s acceptance of all his or her origins and is referred to as the border identity. This is based upon realization of the reality of the facts and one’s acceptance that his or her race is a by-product of a mixture of more than one race. Therefore, the identity is pursuant to this realization and adopts an in-between predefined classification in social cycles. This phenomenon can also be illustrated using a biracial black/white person. Adoption of such a process means that one understands him or herself not to belong to either the white or black race. They understand that there are unique from both their parents with regard to race. It is worth noting that the biracial identity is regarded as a distinct and valid identity in itself. Most people born out white and black parents adopt this identity. This is because of the social setting where the child in brought up. It is predictable that id both parents raise the child together irrespective of other social factors, the child will naturally adopt a biracial identity. However, if the child is raised by a single parent the social and political context associated with the child can have tremendous influence on it with regard to the identity it subscribes itself. This is because at all times identity should not be regarded in isolation. Moreover, it cannot be created. Therefore, social contest forms the overriding influence upon which lead to one’s selection a specific identity option. This is because people tend to understand themselves from the way the external world validates them and how one understand the self and accepts it. After such a process, a one then examine the identity that satisfies the self within that social context. It is also vital to note that the political environment of an area can be critical in determining one’s identity. It a political environment of acceptable, tolerance and integration the question of racial identity may not be useful in to a great extent and many biracial (white/black) people may have a border identity. However, in a political society that is heavily biased towards one racial group of people, there will be a naturally tendency for many people of mixed racial origins to associate themselves with race that has more privileges. This is a natural human trait that helps humans for survival. It can only be undermined by strong beliefs that are religious, philosophical or otherwise. Experiences of personal or societal discrimination can have a lot of influence in electing a racial identity. For example, one person may adopt the identity of the race being discriminated against as an act of defiance, whilst others may adopt an identity of the race being favored in order to escape discrimination or enjoy the benefits accrued or incidental to such favors.
There are other two identity options available to a multiracial person. These include a protean identity and the transcendent identity. These options are not popular in classifications of people into races because they lack clarity and conclusive definitions. A protean identity denotes a person who can shift from racial identity A to racial identity B depending on the social or political context that he or she is found. This is caused by the person understanding that they do not have the features, obligations or need to associate themselves with specific race. They do not depend on culture to fit in, but rather their assorted identities. This is because they rarely blend in any racial profiling. This phenomenon is prevalent among the multiracial people with Asian, Europe, American and Canadian origins combined. It becomes instrumental to enable them camouflage themselves in a society that in so concentrated in racial profiling people. Transcendent identity denotes an identity of a person who believes he or she can ‘transcend’ racial classifications. They believe that all humans should all be treated equally. This is based on the fact that race should not be a product of social construction, but rather a biological feature that all people have and should not be material in any consideration. The mixed race theory is extremely vital, and its developed should be enhanced. As it seeks, inter alia, to integrate people as a mixed race, it implementation will produce numerous benefits that are incidental. It will enable the society fight the harsh effects of racial aggression.
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