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Experiences of racism and the changing nature of white privilege amongst lone white mothers of mixed-parentage children in the UK

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Harman, Vicki

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Abstract The growing number of mixed relationships and mixed-parentage children in the UK has been held up as an indicator of increasing racial harmony. However, research has found that racism is a relatively common experience for mixed-parentage children. This paper draws upon empirical research involving in-depth qualitative interviews with thirty lone white mothers of mixed-parentage children. It argues that as well as negotiating racism directed at their children in a range of contexts including the local area, children’s schools and the extended family, lone white mothers of mixed-parentage children are frequently experiencing social disapproval themselves. Drawing on Frankenberg’s notion of whiteness as a seemingly unmarked and invisible category, this paper contributes an understanding of the complexities that being a lone white mother of mixed-parentage children brings to bear on white privilege.
Keywords Great Britain; racism; discrimination; family; single parent
Classification Family Sociology, Sociology of Sexual Behavior; Social Problems
Free Keywords Interracial families; racism; whiteness; family; discrimination; United Kingdom
Document language English
Publication Year 2010
Page/Pages p. 176-194
Journal Ethnic and Racial Studies, 33 (2010) 2
Status Postprint; peer reviewed
Licence PEER Licence Agreement (applicable only to documents from PEER project)