I will soon be adding a chapter to the 50 SHADES OF BLACK Project titled Reflections of Growing Up Bi-Racial. As I delve deeper into this project, as I reflect more internally, and as I hear from you, I am overwhelmed by all the rich content that emerges.
This project has proven to be simultaneously a celebration of beauty, diversity, and history as well as a place for real reflection about pain, confusion, and inner struggles for identity and acceptance. My friend and renowned poet Gina Loring explained that after having conversations with her friends who are as dark as she is light, "being on either extreme of the spectrum is an up hill battle. The similarities in our painful and frustrating experiences are parallel."
Rearing a bi-racial child with my wife, I want to be sure to give space for (as with ALL the other stimuli that this project offers) reflections about the value, the beauty, the joy, the attractiveness, the struggles, the pain of our brothers and sisters of bi-racial heritage and those who are of lighter shades.
I am reminded of the acclaimed contributions of James McBride and his New York Times Best Selling memoir The Color of Water -a Black Man's Tribute to his White Mother. Keeping with this touching and personal title but offering my own artistic rendition, I designed this artwork for the chapter on this topic.
There are so many artistic references that I'd like to make about this piece as I offer it, but I'd much rather hear from you. What does this cover evoke for you? What reflections do you have on the topic? How might you contribute to the writing of this book as we explore The Complexity of Skin Tone while Reflecting on Growing Up Bi-Racial?
I'd love to hear from you.