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December 27, 2010

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"Mixed-race people are considered the coolest people Everyone wants to be like Tiger Woods, Barack Obama, Vin Diesel or Mariah Carey."

Even if that's true, the people you name are quite unlike Hailee Steinfeld because their mixed race ancestry is right out there for everyone to see. It's not something that most people fail to notice, as in her case.

[HS: That's true of Tiger and Barack. But Mariah could pass for white and Vin Diesel could pass for a Sicilian Italian.]

So how do we explain Idris Elba being cast as Thor in the upcoming Marvel film?

[HS: As a hoax created by racist bloggers? He's playing a minor character and not Thor.]

"But Mariah could pass for white and Vin Diesel could pass for a Sicilian Italian."

Both are more white than anything else, but even so their nonwhite ancestry is quite apparent. It could be that they look whiter in person, I don't know.

From looking at Google Images of Hailee Steinfeld, the only pictures in which there's even a hint of mixed background are those from the movie. She looks completely white in other pictures. What that leads me to believe is maybe that the movie makeup deliberately tries to make her look more "exotic." Why, I don't know.

Also, in the days of the Old West there surely weren't many people of Hailee's background, on the other hand there definitely were many people with part Indian ancestry.

"Traditionally, it’s not racist to consider an actress’ appearance when casting a movie. It’s pretty much the only area left where it’s considered acceptable to discriminate for such reasons."

I guess that the casting director of The Hobbit would beg to differ.

"This week, the casting director of 'The Hobbit' was fired for turning away a woman of Pakistani descent for being too dark to play a hobbit. The agent also placed an advertisement in a New Zealand newspaper seeking extras with 'light skin tones.'"

http://www.theatlanticwire.com/opinions/view/opinion/In-Middle-Earth-Must-All-Hobbits-Be-White-5974

"Mixed-race people are considered the coolest people Everyone wants to be like Tiger Woods, Barack Obama"
That's why everyone wants to be a Mexican in the US. Sarcasm. I at least like high and high middle class mexicans and latinamericans a lot, but you don't see much of these in the U.S., except for shopping and studying.

Kim Darby was 22 when she played Mattie Ross in the original movie version.

Mariah could NOT pass for white. I don't know where you get that from, HS.

Hollywood and its lackeys want it both ways. They wishe to be daring, innovative, scandalous, and avant-garde when casting "minorities" in "traditionally' (this is, in typical Hollywood practices) majority roles, then are shocked and scream racist when anyone notices that Hamlet is Chinese, his father African, and his mother an Andaman Islander.

Of course, fifty years ago Hollywood cast John Wayne as Genghis Khan.

Green: Google Mariah Carey and look at the image results. Maybe not WHITE white, but she could easily pass for Mediterranean (say, Italian or Spanish.)

I just looked her up. I would definitely peg her as mixed-race.

She reminds me somewhat of another mixed race (Jewish-Filipino-Chinese) actress, Phoebe Cates.

"Everyone wants to be like Tiger Woods, Barack Obama, Vin Diesel or Mariah Carey."

Bah, I don't want to be like any of them. Each is utterly repulsive in his or her own way.

There are no grounds for the statement by HS that the character played by Hailee Steinfeld would have been white. Persons of mixed race part white/part Indian were commonplace on the frontier. ( Commonly called half-breeds in the US and known as Metis in Canada) In addition,in Mississipi, Arkansas and Oklahama there were many persons of mixed Choctaw and African ancestry, this the result of the Choctaw practice of slavery which they adopted from their white neigbors. Arkansas was at this time exactly the kind of semi-civilized place where a frontiersman might flout social norms against race mixing because many respectable white women didn't want to live there. So whether the casting director was aware of this or not, a person of mixed Asian/Euro/African ancestry like Hailee Steinfeld is just perfect for the part.

"As I wrote previously, I guess being 75% white is now considered white enough for playing white people."

Interesting you should say that. According to Michael Levin, 75% ancestry is the threshold needed to belong to a given race. Anyone with less than 75% ancestry in a single race should be considered multiracial.

He writes:

"Hybrid populations with multiple lines of descent are to be characterized in just those terms: as of multiple descent. Thus, American Negroids are individuals most of whose ancestors from 15 to 5000 generations ago were sub-Saharan African. Specifying “most” more precisely in a way that captures ordinary usage may not be possible. “> 50%” seems too low a threshold; my sense is that ordinary attributions of race begin to stabilize at 75%. An individual, half of whose ancestors are East Asian and half Caucasian, is to be categorized as just that, of
half northeast Asian and half Caucasian ancestry. Nothing in continental cladistics
precludes mixed ancestry, any more than the concept of a breed of dog excludes
mixtures."

http://www.behavior.org/resources/113.pdf

My absolute favorite Hollywood miscasting of all time - Deacon Jones!:

"In 1978 he played a Viking named 'Thall' in the film 'The Norseman'. Fellow Hall of Famer Fred Biletnikoff joined Jones in that film, also portraying a Norseman."

"According to Michael Levin, 75% ancestry is the threshold needed to belong to a given race."

By that standard Joakim Noah would be considered white. Obviously, there are exceptions to the rule.

"Mariah could NOT pass for white. I don't know where you get that from"

African-born blacks (as in Ghanaians, Nigerians, etc) find it rather laughable that Mariah's considered black in the U.S. (because of the one-drop rule).
Also, among black South Africans, there's sort of a reverse drop rule: you're not considered black unless you're 100% black and look it.

(I know, I went on a bit of a tangent)

"It’s an interesting HBD question regarding whether mixed-race people are, statistically, better performers."

I don't know about mixed-race people, but I'd say blacks are the best actors. Despite their lower average IQs, when speaking they are able to trick people into believing that their IQs are near the white average.

"So how do we explain Idris Elba being cast as Thor in the upcoming Marvel film?

[HS: As a hoax created by racist bloggers? He's playing a minor character and not Thor.]"

1. The character Elba is playing is still a Norse god, so it raises the same issue.

2. It's not a "hoax", probably just a misunderstanding that got passed on.

3. What are you doing calling people "racist"?

At one time I thought the proposed Hannibal movie was going to star Denzel Washington as Hannibal. Now I see that Vin Diesel will be Hannibal and Denzel will be Hasdrubal. Of course neither a black nor half-black actor is suitable for either role! But since the movie doesn't look like it will ever get made, the point could be moot.

Hey, you left out Derek Jeter!

Are you people kidding me? I had no clue Mariah Carey and Vin Diesel were "non-white" or mixed-race. After looking up Hailee, would never have guessed. All look whiter than some southern Europeans, or in Mariah's case someone with a bit of Lebanese ancestry say.

I don't know if they're actually "better" performers than the alternative, but it seems to be a fairly mainstream opinion that mixed-race individuals are definitely amongst the most physically attractive subset of our species.

People like Mariah, Halle Berry, Tiger, and even Obama all get such lavish praise for their looks, I think it naturally evolves into a perception, correct or not, that they're awesome at everything else they do, be it speaking, acting, whatever.

There have been a lot of studies about this sort of thing, what a large factor appearance plays in our perception of talent and competence. I think it's actually not too hard to make the opposite case of what HS was implying, and actually argue that most mixed-race individuals are actually overrated in their fields.

Casting biracial individuals in roles associated more with 'white' character traits could have a positive effect. A lot of the disparities that HBDers fault genetics for, liberals fault discrimination for. One of the largest types of alleged discrimination is the negative or stereotypical portrayal of minorities in cinema. Sociological studies have shown that the depiction of ethnic groups in various media has a significant effect on identity formation, even among the target groups. Therefore, a shift such as this toward minorities being cast as more 'white,' would either begin to remove the last liberal excuse or have a good effect.


'argue that most mixed-race individuals are actually overrated in their fields'

Of the mixed-race individuals you've named, who is overrated?

Mariah Carey's vocal prowess is hard to dispute. Tiger Woods is objectively one of the best golfers to have ever played the game. Obama's leadership/Presidential skills are questioned frequently, but it's hard to dispute the intelligence of someone who graduated magna cum laude from HLS.

I don't know about mixed-race people, but I'd say blacks are the best actors. Despite their lower average IQs, when speaking they are able to trick people into believing that their IQs are near the white average.

Its not their "acting". It just we automatically use verbal ability and "healthy" look as a proxy for IQ.

Have you seen 75 IQ whites? -you can tell something wrong with them even before they open their mouth( thats because to get IQ that low white have to have some sort of congenital defects and/or disease)

75 IQ black individuals are usually perfectly healthy and normal.

The casting of the Black girl in the Western was offensive, as were the appearances of the Blacks and the Asian, because they were not part of the Old West!

Have you ever noticed that when Black people have a lot of White ancestry the last identifiers of their Whiteness is generally the shape of their noses? That was the first thing I noticed about the actress in True Grit, which lead to me quickly identifying her as Black.

The media should lay off the ethnic boosting for a while and give other groups a chance. How about a hospital show where all the top surgeons are people with high functioning down syndrome?

you should see Unforgiven, HS -- its a great Western. Just for the record, HS is by no means a racist, I think it deserves stating, as the mere accusation is vilifying in the extreme. Anyone who thinks so does not read his blog.

"Have you ever noticed that when Black people have a lot of White ancestry the last identifiers of their Whiteness is generally the shape of their noses? That was the first thing I noticed about the actress in True Grit, which lead to me quickly identifying her as Black."

I was actually going to say the same thing. It is easy to detect admixture (asian or black) from the shape of the nose - you simply don't see certain features in white people). The eyebrows are also informative. For example, in this case, when you look at this girl without makeup, you can actually suspect some non-white ancestry:

http://www.imdb.com/media/rm159876096/nm2794962

http://www.imdb.com/media/rm1015514112/nm2794962

http://www.imdb.com/media/rm1712291840/nm2794962

Green -

While there is something African in the shape of Hailee's nose, the shapes of noses differ enough that I am reasonably sure a person with no black ancestry might have a nose of that type. I would not guess from those pictures that she has any such ancestry if I already didn't know.

It could well be that people like Hailee are evidence that the much-discussed One Drop Rule is maybe not as ironclad as sometimes thought. She is highly unlikely to be classified as a black actress - or even multiracial - even though her black ancestry is no secret. This actually has been going on for a while, for example in her 40 years in the public spotlight Carly Simon has never been considered black despite being about one-quarter black.

A more accurate description of the One Drop Rule may be that a person with some black ancestry will be classified as black if (a) the ancestry is clearly reflected in the person's physical appearance (e.g. Alicia Keys) or (b) the person makes a conscious choice to identify as black even if not so reflected in his or her physical appearance (e.g. Congressman G.K. Butterfield).

There were afrocentrist types who claimed socrates was black because his nose was flat and broad. So you're saying he was??

Here are some more pictures of Hailee.

http://www.zimbio.com/pictures/N-ggRrTphUV/True+Grit+Screening/ZLSlraf4zPh/Hailee+Steinfeld

These are interesting because you can see some other girls along with her. Quite frankly, she looks more Asian in a lot of these photos. Definitely looks ethnic here:

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_zWbq9p9HtO8/TQikdAmxh9I/AAAAAAAAX98/Lg-BShWrhJ8/s1600/page0082_large.jpg

http://awake-smile.blogspot.com/2010/12/chloe-moretz-abigail-breslin-nicola.html

The first thing that pops into my head as I watch this movie(True Grit,2010) is that the girl is viewing her dead father in the coffin who is white, and she is clearly black mix, leads me to believe that her mother must have slept with the black chaperon who is with her at the viewing.

If you think Miss Steinfeld is "white", you must be from Brazil or Sicily or some other godforsaken place. Her nostrils are splayed perpendicular to her face. Even whites with unusually fat/flat noses never have nostrils like that. Her eyes and mouth are also odd.

Sure, there were "white" people with partial Negroid or Mongoloid ancestry back in the old West. But the way the filmmakers just shoved it in our faces without any explanation is really just their way of shitting on Europeans in an ironic way.

Besides, she's quite hard on the eyes. What happened to protagonists who were models of BOTH attractiveness and virtue?

"But the way the filmmakers just shoved it in our faces without any explanation is really just their way of shitting on Europeans in an ironic way."

I think it's much more likely that the filmmakers chose her because a) she's Jewish, just like them, and b) she's the daughter of a well-known Hollywood trainer and pitchman. Keepin' it all in the family, so to speak.

"The casting of the Black girl in the Western was offensive, as were the appearances of the Blacks and the Asian, because they were not part of the Old West!"

There were no Asians or blacks in the Old West? Chinese immigrants built much of this nation's western rail systems, and I suppose you never heard of the Buffalo Soldiers. They were the black troops that helped settle much of the West. Moreover, many of the original cowboys were black. Besides, Texas and Arkansa were two states that played big roles in the film, and both of them have huge black populations. History and the present are a lot more diverse than many unlearned people imagine...Moreover, in regards to questions of the appropriateness of Denzel Washington or Vin Disel playing Hannibal. Hannibal was from North Africa. Was he supposed to be Lilly white?

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