Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Blackness in America: The African American Identity

The article from the magazine The Fresh Xpress - The pulse of young Black America, explores how African Americans are perceived by other people and how they should 'behave'.

The article debates that some people see African American identity as having no such thing, that skin tone is an indicator and that community involvement is key to finding Black identity.

Karen Byrd, an African American writes that at school there was no discrimination, whereas when she started college it all changed. She was'taught' that she should take pride in her culture and participate in Black community events. She also had to 'identify' with people she didn't know due to them being Black as well.

This helps debate whether there is a criteria for being Black; either support from others to be proud and 'unite together' or if due to being a minority that this shouldn't be an issue they shouldn't have to 'stick' together just because of their skin colour, rather their identity should be through their personality and character.

Karen also writes that middle and upper class Black citizens are treated as responsible for 'uplifting the race' and are no longer dedicated to the struggle in America. She believes that there shouldn't be a different identity for whites, blacks, Asians or anyone else as only our skin colour is different we are still all the same people. By offering a identity for Blacks separate to other races, will still cause racial distribution and everyone will feel they have to be part of their racial group.

I agree with many things that are written in the article and believe although it may not be direct support for Blacks, it's expressing how identity shouldn't be a label and that it isnt importance to class yourself as something, rather you should show your identity throught who you are as a person.

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