Black, White or Mixed Race?: Race and Racism in the Lives of Young People of Mixed Parentage

The number of people in racially mixed relationships is steadily growing, yet their children are still often stigmatized and assumed to feel confused and unhappy about their racial identities. Social workers argue that they “need” to acquire a black identity, and hence should not be placed with white foster or adoptive parents. Tizard and Phoenix question these beliefs in an exploration of mixed-race identity. They show that many young people have a very positive dual identity, as both black and white, and resist prescriptions from others about the kind of identity they should have. The book is based on recent research with young people from a range of social backgrounds, all of whom had one white and one Afro-Caribbean or African parent. “Black, White or Mixed Race?” contains many quotations from interviews with both children and parents and examines their attitudes towards identity, their cultural origins, their attitudes to black and white people, and their experiences of racism. This is the first study to concentrate on adolescents of black and white parentage and is intended for all lecturers, students and professionals in social work and social policy.

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