The Chaos of Racial Categories
Arin N. Reeves
My mother — a first generation immigrant woman of color physician who raised her children in several countries before making America her home — finds it utterly amusing that her daughter chooses to grapple with diversity for a career. When a Chinese Cuban associate joined her medical practice a few years ago, she challenged me with this “diversity” question: If a man, born in Cuba to a Chinese father and a Cuban-Chinese mother, grows up in Spain, immigrates to America and speaks English, Spanish, and Chinese (with a Spanish accent), is he considered a European, Hispanic, or Asian?
After a lengthy dialogue on race, ethnicity, nationality, and accent, she concluded by asking – Do racial categories enable diversity or do they limit diversity’s full expression?