Moving across racialised boundaries - settling in mixedness? Dialogues in critical mixedness studies [Anthropology of Race and Ethnicity Network]
Anne Lavanchy (University of Applied Sciences)
Karine Geoffrion (Université Laval)
Tuesday 14 August, 10:30-12:15, 13:15-15:00 (UTC+0)

Short abstract:

How does "mixedness" challenge the shape of the desirable citizen, the idealized family and national boundaries? This panel opens a dialogue on race, racism and "mixedness" from the complementary perspectives of kinship, affects and state institutions.

Long abstract:

How does "mixedness" challenge the shape of desirable citizens, idealized families and national boundaries? Addressing this question, the panel aims at fostering exchanges between anthropologists interested in race and its more or less fluid frontiers and hierarchies in various national contexts.

"Mixedness" refers here to unequal systems of categorization that operate at several levels and varying degrees through: 1. Individuals who self-identify and are being identified as mixed; 2. legal and moral institutions, such as families; 3. States, some of which appropriate imaginaries of "mixedness" as a national symbol (e.g. mestizaje in Latin America), while in Europe, mixedness tends to be associated with recent migration flows from the global South, and is embedded in relations of power that stem from European colonialism and Western imperialism.

This panel welcomes empirical papers that question the contextual, relational and changing boundaries of mixedness, and trace down new forms of racial essentializations, inequalities and hierarchies. Areas of research may include:

- Kinship and relatedness: race and medically assisted reproduction technologies; relatedness, belonging and phenotypic similarity (and difference) in mixed descent families and in families with adopted children.

- Affect and intimacy: the intimate management of mixedness by individuals, couples and families; intersectional approaches to mixed individual's everyday lived experience.

- The state, its institutions and bureaucratic processes of racialization: the work of bureaucrats (e.g. in the case of binational marriages); processes of transnational adoption; national discourses and policies on mixedness; whitening and the persistence of racial (national) systems of oppression.