Conference: The Meanings and Construction of Race in Brazil, South Africa, and the United States

Director: Kenneth R. Maxwell, Nelson and David Rockefeller Senior Fellow, Council on Foreign Relations
March 1, 1997 - March 1, 1997

Race has different meanings in different places. Race as we know it in the United States focuses largely on the choices and strategies of being "black" or "white." Yet many immigrants from Latin America and elsewhere do not see themselves in this manner, and in Brazil and South Africa the definitions and meanings of race are particularly subtle. Focusing on the United States, Brazil, and South Africa, this symposium examined the varied meanings of race in different societies. Issues such as socio-economic mobility, gender, and the destruction of racial boundaries were explored by, among others, Khela Shubane of the Center for Policy Studies, South Africa, Manning Marable of Columbia University, Elliot Skinner of Columbia University, Lynn Walker Huntley of the Southern Education Foundation, and Anthony Marx of Columbia University.