Why do you have hazel eyes?

JSW-08-nprJonscott Williams,
Gilbert, AZ.

This is the question either asked, or thought but unasked, by people both Black and White. This is connected to the assumption that one of my parents is White … neither is, though an early ancestor was. Some Black people have questioned whether I was “Black enough” … some Whites have told me that they don’t “see” my race, as if that is a complement. As I’ve gotten older I realize that race is a construct, an encompassing method of identity with unwritten rules that we all seem to think we know.

Keep the conversation going - comment and discuss with your thoughts

  • christopherallen

    i’ve observed hazel eyes within my family and others, so i thought it was one of the many variants among black folks – we’re a very diverse bunch y’know. One inquiry I get, apart from “where are you from?”, is whether or not I’m Asian. I had a white woman in passing flat out inform me that I look like Tiger Woods. I almost prefer that to the inquiries. She said it amicably so I issued a smile, said thank you and kept it moving. My father is black, my mother is black, so my response is always that I’m black. That’s all I know; that’s all I care to know. shugs.

  • escabrosa1 .

    Me too. Race is an issue because people make it an issue.

  • MzzJ

    I have hazel eyes, as an African American and I’m often asked if I’m wearing contacts or where “they” (my eye color) come from. It almost seems like the consensus is only European decedent have the gene for blue, green and hazel eyes.

 

Tweets by Michele Norris