Race and Color Labels in Peru

Tanya Maria Golash-Boza

in Yo Soy Negro

Published by University Press of Florida

Published in print April 2011 | ISBN: 9780813035741
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780813038490 | DOI:
Race and Color Labels in Peru

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This chapter examines how racial categorizations are used in Ingenio and contests generalizations about the construction of race in Latin America. Much of our understanding of race in that region is based on studies of Brazil and the Caribbean. Because of the importance of skin color for defining blackness in Ingenio, these generalizations have limited utility for explaining how racial categorizations work in this case. It explores the disjuncture between Ortiz's views that blackness in Peru is contextually dependent and subject to change, and the contradictory view of Mirella that blackness is determined by skin color and descent, and does not change over the course of one's life. The three forms of whitening, that is, intergenerational whitening, social whitening and cultural whitening are explained.

Keywords: Ingenio; racial categorizations; Latin America; blackness; whitening; intergenerational whitening; cultural whitening; social whitening

Chapter.  9568 words. 

Subjects: Society and Culture

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