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Openness is our greatest human resource.

Blog Entries tagged 'afro-surinamese dutch'

Double Blood

Thanks Ayo, who wrote yesterday that she's transracial. Even though the term has primarily been used to describe of color adoptees adopted by white famillies, I love the potential for the term and I've been pondering it quite a bit in the last year. It's much closer to how I feel than biracial. I belong to many "races" rather than feeling an outright, pure allegiance to one or two. And isn't that the future we all want, one that's fluid, one that identifies with struggle, but with the transcending of that struggle as well? This, fundamentally is a discussion about home. Where it is and how we define ourselves within it in a way that is empowering rather than disempowering.

On a similar note, at one of my lectures in Amsterdam last month, many in the audience were part Dutch, part Surinamese, and when I spoke of being "mixed" they shared their term: Double Blood. And when the daily paper in Amsterdam, Het Parool, did a spread on me, that was the headline: Double Blood, and I was thrilled by the shift. I feel we are finally at the place where our two or three or four sided identity can be seen irrefutably as a place of power and not victimization. Why not claim it all?

We have two traditions, we are not half of anything; we are transracial, we are not bifurcated. I like too, how transracial is different from postracial; it doesn't deny that ideas of race exist, it just chooses a different position towards those ideas. I also like that the term is open and inclusive, all people can embrace it, not just people of color or of many backgrounds, thus allowing allies to use it rather than feel perpetually on the outside. I really think transracial is a term of the future.

Thanks Ayo and all of my Dutch Afro-Surinamese sisters. You've given me a new way of seeing myself. The best present of all.

Check out both Ayo's blog: and also the blog for Outsiders Within, an important discussion regarding adoption that I find especially relevant as I have received so much criticism for my statements in Baby Love about the desire of some adoptive parents to erase the reality of biological parents by denying the difference between the two.

And of course, this seems a particularly important discussion to be having on Martin Luther King Jr.'s official birthday. I'm sure he would approve.
January 21st, 2008

San Francisco Bay Guardian

San Francisco Bay Guardian : Article

Hey everyone, I've got so much to report, from talks with students about sex after pregnancy in Florida to hanging out with beautiful Surinamese-Dutch women in Amsterdam, it's been an amazing ride. As soon as I'm rested, I will catch you all up, but in the meantime, this article about the parenting boom in SF Bay Guardian caught my eye as I was walking down the street here in SF today, and I thought I'd share the article and the note I wrote the writer:

Hey Amanda, I don't have a brilliant quip or raging critique to throw your way, just simple appreciation for a well-written and dead-on article about our generation's ridiculously overwrought and self-absorbed approach to parenting. Like you, I have been a victim of baby as accessory and felt tremendous shame about belonging to such a self-righteous tribe of breeders. I have long-since sold the Bugaboo stroller and let go of the idea of keeping my kid McDonald's free for life. I sometimes even let him watch tv for more than two hours! More important, I am learning to relax with him, to not be so precious about his every gesture or word, and to try to keep my love for him from drowning us both in a sea of mother-gush. It's too much pressure on me, but especially on him. Forcing him to play the role of the beloved, adored, golden child began to look and feel like its own form of child abuse. And yes, there are so many without. How can we raise our children to see, let alone care, about others who don't speak their language, literal or material? Thanks for the reminder.

Peace and love,
November 24th, 2007