Pegasus

Permission To Speak: Multiracial Identities, Community, and the Public Sphere

  • Dr. Washington prompting a discussion with the audience
    Dr. Washington prompting a discussion with the audience
    Kathryn Bedard
  • Dr. Washington presenting a slide
    Dr. Washington presenting a slide
    Kathryn Bedard
  • Dr. Washington calling on students eager to discuss
    Dr. Washington calling on students eager to discuss
    Kathryn Bedard
  • Dr. Washington pointing to her slide and how it connects with the discussion
    Dr. Washington pointing to her slide and how it connects with the discussion
    Kathryn Bedard
November 27, 2017
The talk dealt with how biracial and multiracial people within positions of advocacy and leadership are critiqued for not being black enough due to their identity.

Critics argue that biracial and multiracial people are more privileged for this reason. The talk sought to discover if this critical view causes people to identify to one race despite their heritage or even cause people of bi or multiracial identify to remain silent when it comes to advocacy.

Dr. Myra Washington is an assistant Professor at the University of New Mexico in the Department of Communication and Journalism. Most of her work deals with Critical Media and Cultural Studies, Rhetoric, and both Asian American and African American studies. A lot of her work involves the representation of race, gender, and sexuality in popular culture.

Facebook Blurb: On Monday November 27th, Dr. Myra Washington gave a talk at WC about how biracial and multiracial people within positions of advocacy and leadership are critiqued for not being black enough due to their identity.

During the discussion, Dr. Washington often asked for audience interaction and thoughts on the topic. The talk sought to discover if this critical view causes people to identify to one race despite their heritage or even cause people of bi or multiracial identify to remain silent when it comes to advocacy.

Dr. Washington lecture was surprisingly energetic and easy to follow. Usually these talks involve a speaker just talking to the audience and lecturing before going into a Q and A session. However, from the start she had the audience answering questions and giving input in order for them to better understand the complex issue she was bringing up.

By the end of it, Dr. Washington left the audience feeling that the issue of biracial and multiracial activists in movements such as BLM is certainty a complicated one. Preconceived notions of what race is were often times challenged through audience interaction and opinions.

“This topic is currently debated on who can and cannot say certain things, and the way she addressed the situations and comments put many perspectives in view. There is never a right or wrong way because in doing so there is a standard, and then one has to determine who creates the standard and can judge the standard”-Tori Zieminski, Class of 2019


Last modified on Feb. 7th at 4:19pm by Katie Bedard.