When you're asked where you're from, how do you answer? Aisha Harris, Slate's culture blogger, points out the complexities of her answer in a recent piece:
I am at least partially African, genetically speaking. A few years ago, my father took an ancestry DNA test, which revealed that some of his roots can be traced to Nigeria. But I don't consider myself Nigerian-American, or even African-American. Where I'm from is America--who I am is a black American...
I don't see my preference for being called a black American as a way of denying or distancing myself from my genetic African heritage. Rather, I believe it acknowledges the similarities that do extend to all black people--in spite of our differences--as black people: the prejudices we can face from nonblacks (from police brutality to skewed standards of beauty) to the cultural influences we share with one another, like the aesthetic notion of "black cool," traced to West Africa and translated more recently into black American art.
Harris joins The Daily Circuit to discuss identity.