“Light Bright, darn near white, don’t have the color right.” The tragic mulattos often seen through America eyes as the unique(light eyes and wavy, thick hair) yet misplaced individual who has a parent that is black and one that’s white,they attempt to fit in with American society by simply being themselves but they are faced with the dilemma of deciding what am I? When we look at the overall scheme of things, when civil rights had been fought for equality of African Americans; what was not talked about were the in-betweens, individuals that had no definitive culture of which to belong. Much like a coin toss you get heads or tails which one you choose decides the fate. Heidi Durrow author of The Girl Who Fell from the Sky "I think they can [embrace both cultures] if they're not faced with this question, 'What are you? ‘The satisfactory answer isn't usually, 'I'm black, and white.' Other people want mixed race kids to choose who they are." So what we can draw from Ms.Durrow statement being one; she is a person with a diverse background cannot be it all and must choose what society believes they should be. This is why we must ask, “why are mixed individuals known to be the Tragic Mulatto, and what influence has American culture and society played in the cultivation of the overall all caste system and why does it matter so much? We will take a look into the past and walk are way back to the present and internalize the changes that we can make should have made along the way.
First why are mixed individuals known to be the tragic mulatto? Like The Supremes hit singles says “Love child never meant to be, kept in secrecy.”Lydia Maria Child illustrates in her novel The Quadroons, a girl whom lives a lavish lifestyle, impeccably mannered, spoke polished English and is color struck until her father dies and she loses everything and marries a Caucasian male and has a child and discovers she isn’t what she was told. From this she goes into a deep depression and is placed in slavery and ends up killing herself. Why such a drastic measure? Life security called for desperate measures and a want for financial stability. The promises couldn’t be kept once the Caucasian parent was dead because they were the only one who could give you some assurance in life. We still today see this, a child has to culturally diverse parents and once one parent is left and they die the family washes their hands of them. We can resolve this by simply accepting people, to let racial fabrication not be the root of someone’s place on Earth, bringing true happiness and ease, avoiding the typical stereotypes. Now, what influence has American culture played in the cultivation of the overall “Caste System” in America? Symbolically black is dark, bad, and dirty; while white is pure, clean and innocent. We see in Alex Haley’s Tv-movie production Queen, American culture forced an southern mulatto to stray away from identifying herself as an African American and allows herself to believe her best bet is to live as a white women whom will be viewed by society as a dignified majestic women with value. Only until the man she plans to marry explains that he see’s no difference in her. The 1949 classic Pinky details a story of a college girl whom has no place to go except back to her black grandmother in Mississippi. She kept it a hidden secret from her fiancée who was in WWII, it only until he meets her grandmother and knows that they cannot be together. Justifying the American belief of you stick with your kind and I’ll stay with mine. Pinky’s fiancée flee’s back to her after the war injured, realizing she is as she was the day he met her just a girl, stating that not being with her for being black was nonsense once he explained that a black soldier saved his life making him realize, color made not a difference. The biggest influence America has on the color caste is Jim Crow Laws. A set of southern principles that say if your this color you stay