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Counting Citizens: AALR Examines Race & Census

The Winter/Spring 2011 issue of The Asian American Literary Review includes a forum in response to “Counting Citizens”: “According to the 2000 census, the first to include the option of checking multiple race boxes, nearly seven million American identify and multiracial. One in six babies born in Seattle, Sacramento, and San Antonio is multiracial. Now the 2010 census is here. One imagines the census-taker, going steadily from door to door, perhaps surprised at what she finds. What of the artist, canvassing the same neighborhoods, equally concerned with representation and identity – what does she see? What response does she fashion?”

The Forum allows Jeffry Yang, C. Dale YOung, and Srikanth Reddy to give first and second responses in a discussion on the topic.

Also included with the magazine is a DVD of the making of Kip Fulbeck’s Mixed: Portraits of Multiracial Kids (also available on the author’s website).

The video is a short (5 minute) but insightful, with clips on the 1967 Loving vs. Virginia case that ended race-based marriage restrictions (Fulbeck’s parents were not legally allowed to be married in the US in 1965), the 2000 decision of Bob Jones University to end its ban on interracial dating, and the 2009 refusal by a judge in Louisiana to marry an interracial couple out of concern of “what would happen to the children.” To which Fulbeck responds: “What would happen to the children? They might become President.”

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