Sunday, December 15, 2013

Vietnamese Afro-Amerasians

Many Amerasians experienced ostracism from Vietnamese society.  Black Amerasians often experienced blatant bias, unlike their white counterparts.  Due to their Vietnamese heritage, they were also denied the opportunity to claim an American or African American identity.

Vietnamese Afro-Asian Khanh Le was the inspiration for the documentary, "A Vietnamese Afro-Amerasian Testimony: In Search of the 'Place' in Displacement".  For more information about the documentary, visit this link on the Feature Articles section of The Global Viet.

To read more about Vietnamese Amerasians, specifically Afro-Amerasians, check out the following links.

DeBonis, Steven.  Children of the Enemy: Oral Histories of Vietnamese Amerasians and Their MothersJefferson, NC: Mcfarland & Co Inc Pub, 1995.

Lucious, Bernard Scott.  "In the Black Pacific: Testimonies of Vietnamese Afro-Amerasian Displacements".  Displacements and Diasporas.  Ed. Wanni Anderson, Ed. Robert Lee.  New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 2005.

Phan, Shandon.  "Vietnamese Amerasians in America".  Asian-Nation: The Landscape of Asian America, 2003.

Tran, Thanh.  Vietnamese-Amerasians: Where Do They Belong?  South Hadley, MA: Mount Holyoke College, December 16, 1999.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Organizations to Support Mixed Race Koreans

Mixed race Koreans are a marginalized population.  Korean society has always been obsessed with the idea of racial purity.  Accordingly, it can be quite difficult to be biracial in South Korea.  Life can be especially hard for biracial Koreans with African ancestry, as darker skin is negatively associated with poverty and farm labor.  To address this issue, several organizations have been created to support the growing biracial Korean population.

During the early 1960s, American novelist Pearl S. Buck visited Korea to write The Living Reed.  Buck coined the term “Amerasian”, referring to Korean children fathered by American servicemen during the Korean War.  In 1965, she established the Opportunity Center and Orphanage in Bucheon City (formerly Sosa), South Korea to serve Amerasian ChildrenOffices were subsequently opened in Thailand, the Philippines, and Vietnam.  In the United States, she founded a child sponsorship organization, Pearl S. Buck Foundation (now called Pearl S. Buck International), to address poverty and discrimination faced by children in Asian countries.  She endeavored greatly to raise the awareness of children in Korea who are ethnically mixed and undergo hardships because of the circumstances of their birth and their lives.  Throughout her lifetime, Buck dedicated her energy and resources in order to combat the injustice of social discrimination and prejudice suffered by mixed race children.

MACK (맥) was founded as the Mission for Amerasian Children of Korea in September 1995 in Chicago, IL.  The organization is dedicated to a better understanding of children born to dual cultural parentage and the cultural barrier affecting them, their families, and their communities in Korea and throughout the world, as well as to heighten compassion and understanding by all towards the plight of Amerasians.  In order to meet the needs of a new and growing generation of multiethnic Koreans both abroad and in South Korea, MACK now stands for the Movement for the Advancement of Cultural-diversity of Koreans.

In 2006, American football player Hines Ward created the Hines Ward Helping Hands Foundation.  The foundation is dedicated to helping mixed race children like himself in South Korea, where they have suffered discrimination.  His Helping Hands U.S. Foundation focuses on improving literacy among children and will provide programs and services to better equip them for achieving and handling success in life.  Abroad, his Helping Hands Korea Foundation (formed as a tribute to his mother, Kim Young-hee) has targeted biracial discrimination, especially as it occurs among the children of Korea.  Ward has spoken out against South Korea’s discriminatory practices and pledged his time and allegiance to the biracial children there.  He plans to continue to help make life easier for the mixed race kids in South Korea.  "I will make the struggle to end biracial discrimination my chief cause, for which I will devote my time and resources, both in the United States and Korea," said Ward.  Ward is known in Korea as the Ambassador for biracial children and hopes to make this his legacy both at home and abroad.

Friday, December 7, 2012

The Year in Review

In 2012, "Blasians Defined" has published 17 posts and launched a shop.  I appreciate your taking the time to share in this journey of discovery about the blasian experience.  I would also like to take this opportunity to encourage you to participate in this journey.  If there are stories that can supplement and build on the posts that have already been published, please make a comment, so that I can pursue those leads.  If there are stories that you would like to see developed on the blog, please comment.  This blog is meant to support your ideas and engage your thoughts.  Your ideas are valued!

A list of blog posts follows for your review.   

Why a Blasian Blog?
The First Blasian on TV
Asians & Basketball
Asians & Football
Korean Basketball League Ethnic Draft
Blasian Chart Toppers in the US
Blasian Singers in Asia
Blasian Reality TV Stars
Blasians in the Congo
Blasian Olympic Medalists
Blasian Americans at the 2012 Olympics
Blasian Olympians Worldwide
Blasian American Olympians
The Newest Blasian Reality TV Star...
Two New Blasian Reality Show Stars Debut Today!
Blasian Presidential Campaign Merchandise
Blasian to Star in Nick At Nite Pilot

I look forward to hearing from you!  Thank you for your support!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Blasian to Star in Nick At Nite Pilot

Nick At Nite has announced a new show called Instant Mom.  The show will star Tia Mowry and is about a 25-year-old party girl who marries an older man with kids and becomes an “instant mom”.  Sydney Park has been cast as the eldest child and only daughter, Gabrielle (Gabby).

Syd & mom, Kelly
Sydney was born in Philadelphia, PA on October 31, 1997 to a Korean American father and African American mother.  At the age of six, using the moniker "Syd the Kid", she became the youngest person ever to perform stand up comedy at the world famous Hollywood Improv.  She has also displayed her comedic talents on "America's Got Talent" and "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno".  As an actress, she has appeared in the "That's So Raven" and "CSI: NY".  In 2011, she starred in her one-girl show "Young, Gifted, Half Black" at the Upright Citizen's Brigade at the age of 13.

Instant Mom will premiere on Sunday, September 29, 2013.  Check it out at Nick Mom TV.  

Monday, September 2, 2013

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Blasian Presidential Campaign Merchandise

Whether you support Barack Obama or Mitt Romney, you can get your presidential gear at the Blasians Defined shop.  Election 2012 is less than a month away.  Most orders ship in 24 hours.  Support your presidential candidate and Blasians Defined!  Shop the "Blasians for Obama" or "Blasians for Romney" collections at the Blasians Defined Cafe Press Shop.  

Monday, September 3, 2012

Two New Blasian Reality Show Stars Debut Today!

A new reality TV show featuring two blasians premieres Monday, September 3 at 11 PM ET/PT on Oxygen.  The ethnically diverse cast of Oxygen's Girlfriend Confidential: LA includes Eva Marcille (Puerto Rican / African American), Nikki Chu (Jamaican / Chinese / Canadian), Denyce Lawton (Korean / African American), and Kelly Marie Dunn (Korean adoptee).  The new series follows these beautiful and successful friends, as they help one another navigate the tumultuous waters of love and celebrity life against the backdrop of the Hollywood entertainment industry.

Eva, Nikki, Denyce, & Kelly

Nikki Chu is a high-profile design diva.  She is a dynamic interior and product designer and practices her love for art with her own company, Nikki Chu Design.  She is considered the virtual “it girl” of style.  The name "Nikki Chu" is synonymous with all that is fabulous.  Nikki Chu is a brand in which luxury has no limits and her style is in a class of its own.  Her flare for interior design has been showcased on E! Entertainment, HGTV, VH1, and the Fine Living Channel.  Born and raised in Toronto, Canada, Nikki is of Jamaican Chinese heritage.
 Nikki with her mother and father. 

Denyce's "Made in Korea" tattoo

Actress Denyce Lawton is best known for starring in the series, Tyler Perry’s House of Payne.  She has been the face of many advertising campaigns and has a number of television and film credits.  Born in Seoul, South Korea, Lawton is the middle child of three children, with an older half sister, who is full Korean, and a younger brother, who is also Korean-African American.  Her parents met when her father was stationed in Seoul with the US Army.  As a child, she lived a military life, traveling around the world.  She has lived in Germany, Kansas, Japan, North Carolina, New Jersey, and Washington, DC.

Denyce with her mother and father.

* An online community for mixed-race Koreans, "Interview - Denyce Lawton".

Thursday, August 30, 2012

The Newest Blasian Reality TV Star...

Dina Ruiz Eastwood!

Dina Eastwood began starring in a reality television series on the E! network about her life called Mrs. Eastwood & Company in May of 2012.  The show focuses on the lives of Dina, wife of actor/director Clint Eastwood, and their daughters, Francesca and Morgan.  Mrs. Eastwood manages the six-person a cappella group Overtone, who also live with the Eastwoods in their Carmel-by-the-Sea, California mansion.  The season finale aired on July 23rd.

Television news anchor Dina Ruiz* was assigned an interview with Clint Eastwood in 1993.  Three years later, the couple married in a surprise private ceremony planned by the groom.  Following the birth of the couple's daughter, Morgan, in 1996, Dina left her anchor spot at KSBW-TV.

While in South Africa with her husband for the filming of Invictus, Dina discovered Overtone.  The group sang the soundtrack for the 2009 film.  Dina was so impressed by their talent and potential that she relocated the entire sextet to California and has been managing them ever since.   

In the Spring 2007 issue of Carmel Magazine, Dina spoke about growing up multiracial. –
" I was the darkest kid at my elementary school.  I used to get called 'nigger' in grade school.  I had a real problem with my looks until I was about 20.  Now everyone is mixed.  It's no big deal.  My dad is black and Japanese.  And my mom's Irish, German and English."

LEFT: Dina's dad, Michael
RIGHT: Dina's mom, Mary Lou

* Although Dina's family name is Hispanic, she is not Hispanic at all.  Dina's father was adopted by a Portuguese American / Puerto Rican family named Ruiz.

* E! Online, "Mrs. Eastwood & Company".
* Dina Eastwood, Twitter.
* Carmel Magazine, "The Simple Things: Dina Eastwood Prefers Substance Over Style", Spring 2007.