In a new feature by National Geographic, writer Lise Funderburg talks to people who often are often asked a rather loaded question: “What are you?”.
While the article simply featured people relaying their experiences, I couldn’t help but feel that there was an almost forced framework of a “post-racial” America. Especially with those in the article who made mention of their diverse upbringings, which, given the mono-racial reality for most Americans, is still far from the norm.
Then there was the “spectacle” aspect of article. While I’m huge fan of Martin Schoeller’s portraiture, I felt as if I was being compelled to dissect and awe at the exotic, rare, features of some of the lovely subjects, wondering what boxes they check when filling out certain types of paperwork. But, of course, I, the reader, am also supposed to ignore the reality that the boxes they check have no bearing on how they might be perceived in social settings and society in general.