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Assessing multiracial identity theory and politics: The challenge of hypodescent

RAINIER SPENCER
Ethnicities
Vol. 4, No. 3, SPECIAL ISSUE: MAPPING COMPARATIVE STUDIES OF RACIALIZATION IN THE US (September 2004), pp. 357-379
Published by: Sage Publications, Ltd.
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/23889370
Page Count: 23
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Abstract

It is increasingly possible to detect a split in regard to current analyses of multiracial identity in the United States. On the one hand there remains a relatively naïve brand of multiracial activism and identity politics that has deep roots in the recent movement to institute a US federal multiracial category; while on the other hand we find a steadily maturing body of scholarship on mixed-race identity that is several levels removed in terms of intellectual rigor and objectivity. As this latter movement continues to mature, it increasingly forces the former to acknowledge and to confront important issues of logical consistency in the multiracial identity debate. This article represents an effort to guide and shape that discussion in assessing the ideological foundation of multiracial identity politics in the United States.

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