53 Mixed-Race API Celebrities on Their Racial Identity

Wentworth Miller is of African American, Jamaican, German, English, Russian, Dutch, French, Syrian, and Lebanese descent. In a 2004 interview with The Guardian about the film human tension (which follows the story of “a light-skinned African-American man who decides to pass on as white” to enable a life and career otherwise inaccessible to him in 1940s America “), Miller said:

“‘There were some things that I automatically understood about this character. ‘Fitting’ isn’t something that comes to mind. On the other hand, because you’re mixed race, you have this question of, ‘Well, maybe I do “I don’t have to answer to any particular community, as I’m not really part of any particular community. Maybe I just have to answer for myself.” It kind of makes you a racial lone ranger.”

In a 2017 interview with Interview Magazine, Wentworth elaborated on growing up with a mixed race and its identity: “To be honest, it wasn’t something I looked into very closely until college, which I think is what university is about: self-examination and dealing with those questions of ‘Who am I?'”

When asked if that self-examination caused him any anxiety, Miller replied, “If it did, it was because other people were trying to define me and my own journey. There’s a quote I often refer to from Toni Morrison’s lover, that is, ‘definitions belong to the definitions and not to the defined’. The great thing about growing up in Brooklyn is that, because of the rich cultural and racial diversity there, no one seemed to think too much about where I fit on the racial spectrum. But there were times when I ran into someone who was interested in finding out what breed it was. That would come as a surprise, and in some cases a slap in the face.”

He explained how his identity played into his acting: “Well, the backstory for anyone of mixed race is being misperceived for a lifetime and choosing to continue that misconception or correct it, so I’m aware of identity and race as much more fluid, I think, than someone who is ‘pure’ one or the other. And acting challenges me to tackle those particular issues.”

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