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Boundaries of LoveInterracial Marriage and the Meaning of Race$
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Chinyere K. Osuji

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781479878611

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: January 2020

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479878611.001.0001

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“Can Interracial Love Save Us?”

(p.205) Conclusion
Boundaries of Love

Chinyere K. Osuji

NYU Press

Boundaries of Love overtly challenges the sanguine picture of interracial marriage being the solution to racism and white supremacy. Adopting a “critical constructivist” perspective, this book reveals how black-white couples - whether in a society where they are flexible or one in which they are more rigid - often reproduced ethnoracial boundaries. Race mixture as a solution to racism has been a potent racial ideology both Brazil and the United States. The ideology of Brazil as a “racial democracy” has characterized it as having harmonious race relations, integration, and high proportions of interracial mating. This ideology obscured how centuries of race-mixing have co-existed alongside a white socioeconomic and political elite disenfranchising non-white Brazilians. The notion that “interracial love saves America” can gloss over ethnoracial preferences based in anti-blackness for both white and black partners. Of course, not all of the couples that I interviewed subscribed to these notions. However, enough did in both societies to call into question the blanket statement that all interracial love is anti-racist. More importantly, none of the couples in either society revealed a disintegration or blurring of racial boundaries that many, including academics, have come to expect.

Keywords:   Interracial marriage, Multiracial Family, Comparative Race, Constructivism, Casais interraciais, Mestiçagem

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