Grounded in the personal narratives of twenty interracial couples with multiracial children, this volume uniquely explores interracial couples' encounters with racism and discrimination, partner difference, family identity, and counseling and therapy. It intimately portrays how race, class, and gender shape relationship dynamics and a partner's sense of belonging. Assessment tools and intervention techniques help professionals and scholars work effectively with multiracial families as they negotiate difference, resist familial and societal disapproval, and strive for increased intimacy. The book concludes with a discussion of interracial couples in cinema and literature, the sensationalization of multiracial relations in mass media, and how to further liberalize partner selection across racial borders.
Kyle D. Killian
Introduction. What Interracial Couples Can Tell Us
Significance of the Book
Unpacking Basic Concepts: Race
Interracial in the Age of Obama: The Impact of Color-Blind and "Postracial" Discourses
The Politics of Voice: A Note from the Author
1. Racialized Bodies and Borders in the United States
Defining and Demarcating Borders
Interracial Borders from the Sixteenth Century to the Present
Trends in Black-White Intermarriage
Race and Sex Differences in Marriage Rates: The "Marriage Squeeze"
Interracial Mate-Selection Theories
2. Crossing a Black-and-White Border: Choosing the Other
Attraction and Falling in Love
Partners' Reactions to Differences
Is There Any Difference?
Negotiating Differences in Axes of Power to Establish a Couple Identity
In Black and White: The Border of Race
3. Crossing Community Borders: Families of Origin
Social Support and Resistance to the Relationship
Strategies of Coping with Reactions
Multiracial Couples and Social Networks
Partner Sensitivity to Racism: The Community Context
4. A Nexus of Borders: The Next Generation
The Next Generation and Their Opportunities
A Persistent Question: "What About the Children?"
Intersections of Gender and Race
Intersections of Race and Class
White Male and Female Partners
About Difference: Social and Political Dimensions
Happy Together? Processes Contributing to Couple Identity Formation
Couple Identities and Negotiation Styles
5. Raising (and Erasing) Difference: Dominant and Marginalized Discourses in Interracial Couples' Narratives
What Is Discourse Analysis?
The Discourse of Homogamy
The Discourse of Hypersensitivity
The Discourse of History's Insignificance
What These Findings Say About Multiracial Couples
An Overarching Discourse of "No Race Talk"
6. Systemic Interventions with Interracial Couples
The Art of Drawing Distinctions Instead of Conclusions
What Couples Said About Therapy
Couples Who Might Present for Therapy
Specific Assessments and Interventions
A Narrative Approach to Therapy with Multiracial Couples
7. (Re)presentations of Interracial Couples in Cinema
Cinema and Literature: Racial Logics and the Hegemonic Aesthetics of Intimacy
Interracial Couples' Own Depictions of Their Intimate Relations
Reflecting on the Research and the Researcher: Integrating the Interview Process
Are Interracial Couples Different from Intraracial Couples?
Salience of Identities: Under Which Conditions
Appendix A. Summary of Participant Information
Appendix B. Assessment Inventories
Appendix C. Directions for Scoring the Assessment Inventories
Appendix D. Resources for Interracial Couples and Multiracial Families and Individuals