Standing on Both Feet: Voices of Older Mixed Race Americans, by Cathy Tashiro




  1. History Matters: Racial Rules for Blacks and Asians
    Pertinent history of African Americans and Asian Americans, their similarities and differences, and the historical treatment of people of mixed race.
  2. Mixed Race: It’s a Family Affair
    Disbelief in familial relationships by others, denial, and even abandonment haunt the stories of some people in this book. Yet several families managed to stay together and thrive in spite of extreme obstacles.
  3. Mixed Race Identity: The Racial Chimera
    Analysis of the often contradictory ways people talked about their identities, organizing them into five dimensions of mixed race identity.
  4. Axes of Difference: Race and Intersections of Class and Gender
    Examples of how mixed race interacts with social class and gender.
  5. Eurasian or Bangus? Other Nations and Mixed Race
    Some mixed Asian American women who grew up or spent significant time in Asia provide compelling stories about their lives, giving insights into the status and treatment of mixed race Asians in Asia and a basis of comparison for their treatment in the United States.
  6. Aging and Identity: The Embodiment of History
    How have definitions of self and attitudes about aspects of heritage changed with the process of aging? Also, how experiencing relevant historic events at stages of life has influenced identity.
  7. Can We Stand on Both Feet?
    Summarizing how mixed race people are viewed and treated is directly related to the state of race in America. Are we now in a “post-racial” America where we can all stand on both feet?

This is a fascinating book that will make readers look at the people around them with new and more sympathetic eyes. Cathy Tashiro combines great tact and empathy with intellectual acuity in describing how twenty-odd older Americans coped with and came to terms with living with a mixed-race background in a culture profoundly marked by racism. ‘Standing on Both Feet’ is always interesting and at times is deeply moving.

—Mark Jensen,
Pacific Lutheran University