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A "Liminal Space" Between Inclusion And Intolerance

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Sage co-created a children's book, "I Love Grandma's House: A Biracial Girl and Her Two Special Worlds," to help biracial kids understand their experiences aren't "alien." (Screenshot via Bookshop)

The theme of LAist's Black History Month coverage this year is: “What does it mean to be Black in L.A.?” We'll publish responses from community members and staff throughout the month. Add your voice to the conversation below.

The Black Angelenos we've heard from so far — both community members and voices from our newsroom — describe L.A. as everything from "a place of possibilities" to a city of "contradictions."

Today, we hear from a biracial woman who has struggled to find place to fit, to feel comfortable, to be "at ease," to bring her Black and white identities together as a whole self.

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"I’m a Black biracial woman who grew up in neighborhoods all over greater Los Angeles, from Sherman Oaks to West Covina. What it has meant for me is bearing witness to different realities for my Black and white families. There is no such place as a biracial neighborhood in L.A. Biraciality exists in a liminal space between the inclusion it touts and the intolerance it elicits.

"Like a lot of America, L.A. can be more of a tossed salad than a melting pot when it comes to diversity. It was rare, but not unheard of, for me to see another biracial family. In those moments I felt at ease. I felt seen. I felt normal. This is why I co-created the book "I Love Grandma’s House: A Biracial Girl and Her Two Special Worlds," to show other biracial children in and beyond Los Angeles that their lived experience isn’t alien and that there are other kids growing up the same way."

Sage, Long Beach



The first installment of our The 8 Percent project began exploring the inextricable ties between L.A. and its Black residents — how Black migration, community and culture have shaped and changed L.A. For Black History Month, we’re homing in on a more specific experience — yours. Tell us: What does it mean to you to be Black in L.A.?

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