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All posts copyright © 2001- by C.N. Le.
Some rights reserved. Creative Commons License

The views and opinions expressed on this site and blog posts (excluding comments on blog posts left by others) are entirely my own and do not represent those of any employer or organization with whom I am currently or previously have been associated.

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Behind the Headlines: APA News Blog

Academic Version: Applying my personal experiences and academic research as a professor of Sociology and Asian American Studies to provide a more complete understanding of political, economic, and cultural issues and current events related to American race relations, and Asia/Asian America in particular.

Plain English: Trying to put my Ph.D. to good use.

November 15, 2007

Written by C.N.

Bloggers of Color Speak Out

One of the fundamental tenets of the Internet is that it gives marginalized groups and people the opportunity to express themselves more easily and freely than traditional media. As The Boston Globe reports, that promise is increasingly becoming fulfilled by bloggers of color (thanks to AngryAsianMan.com for pointing out the article):

These intellectual challenges to mainstream and other viewpoints are some of the opinions Latino, Asian/Pacific Islander-American, and black bloggers are exposing on a growing number of sites focused on social, political, and cultural issues. The sometimes facetiously named blogs range from Angry Asian Man to The Angry Black Woman.

Readers can find Latino viewpoints at Guanabee, The Unapologetic Mexican, or Latino Pundit. Those interested in information from an Asian angle head to Ultrabrown, Zuky, or Sepia Mutiny. Sites created by blacks include The Field Negro, Too Sense, and Resist Racism. But often these bloggers discard the handcuffs of their ethnic origins to tackle subjects affecting a range of racial or ethnic groups.

These sites – many of which launched in the past year, although a few are older – have become places where people of color gather to refine ideas or form thoughts about race relations, racial inequities, and the role pop culture has in exacerbating stereotypes. The writers often bring attention to subjects not yet covered by mainstream media.

Overall, the Boston Globe article portrays bloggers of color very positively. At the same time, I could not help but notice the quote (cited above), “these bloggers discard the handcuffs of their ethnic origins to tackle subjects affecting a range of racial or ethnic groups” (emphasis added).

I’m not really sure what the article’s author means by that statement. Is she implying that covering an issue that predominantly or most immediately affects one particular racial or ethnic group in a particular story is counterproductive and ultimately divisive? Does she mean that it’s not useful to point out specific issues, experiences, or characteristics of a particular racial/ethnic group?

I certainly hope that these are not the implications she intended because that only plays into the whole “colorblind” myth of American society — that everyone is all the same and should be treated according to a “standard” manner or set of rules.

In fact, I would guess that most if not all of these bloggers portrayed in the article would probably agree that while there are certainly many commonalities that different racial/ethnic groups share, there are many things that make each group unique.

Further, pointing out these unique characteristics ultimately benefits us by educating us and expanding our knowledge of others, rather than dividing or separating us. Let’s not fall into that colorblind (some would even say White supremacist) way of thinking.


Author Citation

Copyright © 2001- by C.N. Le. Some rights reserved. Creative Commons License

Suggested reference: Le, C.N. . "Bloggers of Color Speak Out" Asian-Nation: The Landscape of Asian America. <http://www.asian-nation.org/headlines/2007/11/bloggers-of-color-speak-out/> ().

Short URL: http://www.asian-nation.org/headlines/?p=509

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