[Ads-l] Early WOTY nominee: "transracial"

Bonnie Taylor-Blake b.taylorblake at GMAIL.COM
Tue Jun 16 17:03:20 UTC 2015

I know "transracial" has been around for several decades, with its
most prominent usage applied to interracial adoptions, generally of
black children by white parents.

But the word now seems to be gaining a usage with respect to the
situation of Rachel Dolezal, born white and now living as and
considering herself to be black.

No doubt this new (?) usage has been influenced by the uptick in usage
of "transgender" because of the recent transition of Caitlyn Jenner
from male to female.  The view seems to be that Dolezal has
"transitioned" (or has been attempting to transition) from white to
black, hence "transracial."

Or have I simply missed earlier instances of "transracial" used in the
sense of, well, "passing"?

-- Bonnie

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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