Academic journal article Journal of Comparative Family Studies

Beyond Black: Biracial Identity in America

Academic journal article Journal of Comparative Family Studies

Beyond Black: Biracial Identity in America

Article excerpt

ROCKQUEMORE, Kerry Ann and David L. BRUNSMA, BEYOND BLACK: Biracial Identity in America. Thousand Oaks, California: Sage Publications, 2002,179 pp., $29.95 softcover.

This informative and provocative text reports valuable exploratory survey research of over 177 biracial college students' thoughts on their racial identity and what social factors influence their identity choices. The authors' intention was to address the scarcity of empirical research that informed the 2000 US Census debate. And, well they did!

In six concise chapters, readers even completely unfamiliar with this type of research, begin to appreciate the relevance, complexity and challenges of racial classification and ultimately cultural understanding.

They introduce a most useful theoretical framework based on symbolic interactionism. Their data suggest multiple categories for the ways that black/white multiracial people understand their biracialism: a.) border identity, b.) singular identity, c.) protean identity and/or d.) transcendent identity. …

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