Black Celebrities You May not Have Known Were of Chinese Descent.
Table of Contents
- 1 Black Celebrities You May not Have Known Were of Chinese Descent.
- 1.1 20 Black Celebrities of Chinese Origins (Blasian)
- 1.1.1 Tiger Woods
- 1.1.2 Naomi Campbell
- 1.1.3 Pamela Grier
- 1.1.4 Tyson Beckford
- 1.1.5 Rae Dawn Chong
- 1.1.6 Robbi Lynn Chong
- 1.1.7 Marcus Chong
- 1.1.8 Sean Paul
- 1.1.9 Robinne Lee
- 1.1.10 Kelis Rogers
- 1.1.11 Shaffer Chimere Smith
- 1.1.12 Khalil Kain
- 1.1.13 Kreesha Turner
- 1.1.14 Foxy Brown
- 1.1.15 Karin Taylor
- 1.1.16 Angela Yee
- 1.1.17 Patrick Chung
- 1.1.18 Tiffany Limos
- 1.1.19 Ayesha Curry
- 1.1.20 Tessanne Amanda Chin
- 1.2 History: Why these celebrities are of Chinese descent?
Living in a Multi-ethnic World
Multiracialism is a society composed of a diverse mix of people while respecting different cultural background, religion, language, and traditions. Nowadays when it comes to multiracialism, the question is addressed as something new to deal with in the future. However, history has already experienced, albeit with difficulty, in some parts of the world periods of multiracial society. In the past, in these places people of different ethnic groups have generated mixed marriages from which they were born multi-ethnic children. These people of multiracial and multi-cultural origins make up a significant portion of the population in many parts of the world. In North America, studies have shown that the multi-ethnic population is constantly growing. In many countries of Latin America and the Caribbean, mixed-race people make up the majority of the population. Due to the reduction in racial discrimination, many multiracial people from multiethnic genetic heritage does not feel the need to hide their multiple origins and heritage. In recent years many celebrities have shared their origins and reported to be the result of multiracial mix. Never make assumptions about a person’s ethnicity or ‘race’ (geneticists have demonstrated that race is biologically not a reality), since his or her back story may be a surprise. The tracking of race is used to enforce anti-discrimination laws, the increased number of mixed people created a complexity of racial self-identification since these people have multi-genetic heritage. Recently it has been invented the term Blasian to indicate dark skinned people with African, Asian origins, and ancestors, and sometimes even Caucasian, a mix not always obvious at a first glance.
20 Black Celebrities of Chinese Origins (Blasian)
Here a list of some international celebrities who have shared to have a Chinese ancestor
Eldrick Tont “Tiger” Woods is an American professional golfer, one of the most successful golfers of all time. He was born on December 30, 1975, in Cypress, California, to Earl and Kultida Woods and he is the only child of their marriage. Kultida, originally from Thailand, is of mixed Thai, Chinese, and Dutch ancestry. Earl a retired lieutenant colonel and Vietnam War veteran was African American and traces of European descent. Earl’s mother Maude Carter was of light skin. Some suggest possible Native American and Chinese ancestry. Tiger refers to his ethnic make-up as “Cablinasian” (a syllabic abbreviation he coined from Caucasian, Black, American-Indian, and Asian. [Wikipedia]
Naomi Elaine Campbell is an English supermodel, she is considered by the fashion industry, one of the six top models of her generation. She was born on May 22, 1970, in Streatham, South London, the daughter of Jamaican-born dancer Valerie Morris. Naomi Campbell has never met her father. She is of African-American descent, as well as of Chinese Jamaican ancestry through her paternal grandmother, who carried the family name “Ming“. [Wikipedia]
Pamela Suzette “Pam” Grier is an American actress that became famous in the early 1970s. She starred in Quentin Tarantino‘s film Jackie Brown, for which she received a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress. Rotten Tomatoes has ranked her as the second greatest female action heroine in film history. Director Quentin Tarantino remarked that she may have been cinema’s first female action star. She was born on May 26, 1949, in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, the daughter of Gwendolyn Sylvia, a homemaker and nurse, and Clarence Ransom Grier, Jr., who worked as a mechanic and Technical Sergent in the United States Air Force. Grier has stated that she is of mixed ancestry consisting of African, American, Hispanic, Chinese, Filipino and Cheyenne Indian heritage. [Wikipedia]
Tyson Beckford is an American fashion model, best known as a Ralph Lauren Polo model. Beckford was born on December 19,1970, in Rochester, New York to a Jamaican father of mixed race including Chinese paternal grandmother and a Jamaican mother of Panamanian, Afro-Jamaican descent. During his school years, in The Bronx ,Tyson was often teased about his looks. [Wikipedia]
Rae Dawn Chong
Rae Dawn Chong is a Canadian-American actress best known for her roles in the films Quest for Fire (1981), The Color Purple (1985), Commando (1985), and Time Runner (1993). She has become a naturalized United States citizen. Chong was born on February 28, 1961, in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, the first daughter of Maxine Sneed and comedian/actor Tommy Chong. Chong’s father is of Chinese and Scotch-Irish, French descent, and her mother is of Afro-Canadian and Cherokee descent. Chong has said that her paternal grandfather left a poor village in China in the 1930s to live with an aunt in Canada. [Wikipedia]
Robbi Lynn Chong
Robbi Lynn Chong is a Canadian actress and former model. She works in popular TV Shows: The Cosby Show (1988), Poltergeist: The Legacy (1996-1998) and ER (2006). Chong was born on May 28, 1965, in Vancouver, British Columbia, the second daughter of Maxine Sneed and Tommy Chong. Both parents are biracial. She is the sister of Rae Dawn Chong. They grew up desperate to know anything about their Chinese culture, but their grandfather had great racial shame and refused to teach Cantonese to his children or grandchildren. [Wikipedia]
Marcus Chong (born Marcus Wyatt) is an American actor, best-known roles are Huey P. Newton in Panther (1995), directed by Mario Van Peebles, and Tank the Operator in The Matrix (1999). Chong was born on July 8, 1967, in Seattle, Washington to an African American father and a Chinese-American mother. His father, Martin Wyatt, was a sports reporter in San Francisco for KGO-TV. [Wikipedia]
Sean Paul Ryan Francis Henriques is a Jamaican recording artist, musician, producer, and actor. Paul was born on January 9, 1973, in Kingston, to parents Garth and Frances, both of whom were talented athletes. His mother is a well-known painter. His paternal grandfather had Sephardi Jewish ancestry, from a family that had emigrated from Portugal, and his paternal grandmother was Afro-Caribbean; his mother is of English and Chinese Jamaican descent. [Wikipedia]
Robinne Lee is an American actress and author. She made her screen debut in the 1997 and she spends following years working in smaller films, and well as co-starred in television movies. On television, Lee also guest-starred on Buffy the Vampire Slayer. She will next be seen in Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed. Her first novel will be released by St Martin’s Press in June 2017. Lee was born on July 16, 1974, in Mount Vernon, New York. Lee is the daughter of Jamaican parents of African, Chinese, British, and Arawak Indian descent. [Wikipedia] , [Huffington Post]
Kelis Rogers is an American singer-songwriter and certified chef. Kelis has been recognized at the Brit Awards, Q Awards, NME Awards, and Grammy Awards ceremonies. Kelis was born on August 21, 1979, and raised in the Harlem, where she was raised, a neighborhood of Manhattan, New York City. Her father Kenneth was an African American jazz musician and Pentecostal minister and was formerly a professor at Wesleyan University. Her mother Eveliss is a Chinese-Puerto Rican fashion designer who inspired Kelis to pursue her singing career. [Wikipedia]
Shaffer Chimere Smith
Shaffer Chimere Smith better known by his stage name Ne-Yo, is an American R&B singer, songwriter, record producer, dancer, and actor. Ne-Yo gained fame for his songwriting abilities with a single in 2004 . He was a guest judge on NBC’s America’s Got Talent Judge Cuts. Ne-Yo was born on October 18, 1979, in Camden, Arkansas. His father is of African American and Chinese descent, and his mother is African-American. Both his parents were musicians. As a young child, he was raised by his mother after she separated from his father.
Khalil Kain is an American actor best known for his role as Raheem in the 1992 film Juice and as Darnell Wilkes on the UPN/The CW sitcom Girlfriends, replacing Flex Alexander. Kain was born on November 22, 1964, in Manhattan, New York City, of African American and Chinese descent. His father is poet, playwright, recording artist Gylan Kain, founder of The Last Poets. [Wikipedia]
Kreesha Turner is a Canadian/Jamaican recording artist and songwriter. She began her musical career after a successful audition with Virgin Records. She signed a record deal with the Capitol Music Group, under which the Virgin imprint operates. Concurrently, EMI Music Canada signed her in order to more effectively tap into the Canadian market. Born on June 10, 1985, in Canada, to a father of Scottish ancestry and a Jamaican mother of African and Chinese descent. She was raised in both Canada and Jamaica. [Wikipedia]
Inga DeCarlo Fung Marchand, better known by her stage name Foxy Brown, is an American rapper, model, and actress. She is best known for her solo work, as well as numerous collaborations with other artists. She was born on September 6, 1978, New York City, New York. Raised in Brooklyn, New York, her father Winston Marchand abandoned the family at a young age to pursue his career at ERAC records. She is of mixed Afro-Trinidadian, Indo-Trinidadian, and Chinese Trinidadian descent. [Wikipedia]
Karin Katherine Taylor is a former international fashion model, known as Playboy magazine’s June 1996 Playmate of the Month. Taylor began her modeling career at age 17 when she was discovered by the Ford Modeling agency in Miami. Taylor moved to Los Angeles and began an acting career that included a guest-starring appearance on Baywatch as Taylor Johnson. Taylor was born on November 28, 1971, in Kingston , Jamaica. She’s of Jamaican-Chinese descent. [Wikipedia]
Angela Yee is an American radio and TV personality. She co-hosts with DJ Envy and Charlamagne Tha God, the nationally syndicated morning show The Breakfast Club. She gravitated toward marketing and music industries soon after graduation from college. Yee was born on January 3, 1976, in Brooklyn to a West Indian Montserrat mother and a Cantonese father. [Wikipedia]
Patrick Christopher Chung is an American football strong safety for the New England Patriots of the National Football League. Chung was born on August 19, 1987, in Kingston, Jamaica. He is of Chinese and Jamaican descent. Chung’s mother, Sophia George-Chung, is a Jamaican reggae artist who was popular in the 1980s. [Wikipedia]
Tiffany Rochelle Limos is an American actress best known for her role as Peaches in the 2002 film Ken Park. Limos had also written three scripts. In 2007 was honored at the Cinemanila Film Festival by then-President of The Philippines, Gloria Arroyo. Limos apprentice and worked for Larry Clark, Quentin Tarantino, Michel Gondry, Woody Allen and Spike Lee. She was born on January 31, 1980, in Dallas, Texas. Her parents are both Filipino and their ancestry includes Spanish, Hawaiian, French, African and Chinese. [Wikipedia] [Ethnic Celebs]
Ayesha Alexander Curry is a Canadian-American celebrity cook, cookbook author, actress, model, and businesswoman. Her cooking career started in 2014 when she began to present cooking demonstrations on her Youtube channel Little Lights of Mine. Curry married professional NBA player, Stephen Curry, in 2011. She was born March 23, 1989, in Toronto, Canada. Her mother is Chinese Jamaican and her father is Polish-African American. [Twitter]
Tessanne Amanda Chin
Tessanne Amanda Chin is a Jamaican recording artist, best known for winning Season 5 of NBC’s reality TV singing competition The Voice as part of Adam Levine’s team. Chin was born on September 20, 1985, in Kingston, Jamaica. Her father, Richard Chin, is of Jamaican-Chinese descent and her mother, Christine Chin, also a Jamaican national, is of English and African descent. Her mother was the trumpeter and singer in The Carnations and her father was the band’s drummer. The family has a recording studio in their home in Jamaica. [Wikipedia]
History: Why these celebrities are of Chinese descent?
Chinese people usually identify a person by ethnic origin instead of nationality. As long as the person is of Chinese descent, that person is considered Chinese, and if that person lives outside of China, that person is overseas Chinese. Overseas Chinese (海外华人) are people of Chinese birth or descent who live outside China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau. Overseas Chinese can be of the Han Chinese ethnic majority, or from any of the other ethnic groups in China. Different waves of immigration led to subgroups among overseas Chinese such as the new and old immigrants in Southeast Asia, North America, Oceania, the Caribbean, Latin America, South Africa, and Russia. In the 19th century, during Qing dynasty, the age of colonialism was at its height and the great Chinese diaspora began. Many colonies lacked a large pool of laborers. Meanwhile, in the provinces of Fujian and Guangdong in China, there was a surge in emigration as a result of the poverty and ruin caused by the Taiping rebellion. The Qing Empire was forced to allow its subjects to work overseas under colonial powers. Many of these migrants who entered Western countries were themselves overseas Chinese, particularly from the 1950s to the 1980s, a period during which the PRC placed severe restrictions on the movement of its citizens. In 1984, Britain agreed to transfer the sovereignty of Hong Kong to the PRC; this triggered another wave of migration to the United Kingdom (mainly England), Australia, Canada, USA, Latin America and other parts of the world. The Tiananmen Square protests of 1989 further accelerated the migration. The wave calmed after Hong Kong’s transfer of sovereignty in 1997. In addition, many citizens of Hong Kong hold citizenship or have current visas in other countries so if the need arises, they can leave Hong Kong at short notice. In fact, after the Tiananmen Square incident, the lines for immigration visas increased at every consulate in Hong Kong.
Chinese Caribbeans (加勒比华人) are people of Chinese ethnic origin living in the Caribbean. There are small but significant populations of Chinese and their descendants in all countries of the Greater Antilles. They are all part of the large Chinese diaspora known as Overseas Chinese. Between 1853 and 1879, 14,000 Chinese laborers were imported to the British Caribbean as part of a larger system of contract labor bound for the sugar plantations. Imported as a contract labor force from China, Chinese settled in three main locations: Jamaica, Trinidad, and British Guiana (now Guyana), initially working on the sugar plantations. Most of the Chinese laborers initially went to British Guiana; however when importation ended in 1879, and the population declined steadily, mostly due to emigration to Trinidad and Suriname. Chinese immigration to Cuba started in 1847 when Cantonese contract workers were brought to work in the sugar fields, bringing the religion of Buddhism with them. Hundreds of thousands of Chinese workers were brought in from Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan during the following decades to replace and / or work alongside African slaves. After completing 8-year contracts or otherwise obtaining their freedom, some Chinese immigrants settled permanently in Cuba, although most longed for repatriation to their homeland. When the United States enacted the Chinese Exclusion Act on May 6, 1882, much Chinese in the United States fled to Puerto Rico, Cuba, and other Latin American nations. They established small niches and worked in restaurants and laundries.
Chinese Canadians (华裔加拿大人) are Canadians of full or partial Chinese ancestry. The Chinese community in Canada is one of the largest overseas Chinese communities and is the second largest in North America after the United States, and also the seventh largest in the Chinese diaspora. The first record of Chinese in Canada can be dated back to 1788. A group of roughly 70 Chinese carpenters from Macau hired by the renegade British Captain John Meares. When British Columbia agreed to join Confederation in 1871, one of the conditions was that the Dominion government build a railway linking British Columbia with eastern Canada within 10 years. British Columbia politicians and their electorate insisted the project cut costs by employing Chinese to build the railway. Originally, in 1880 Andrew Onderdonk, one of the main Canadian Pacific Railway construction contractors, enlisted Chinese laborers from California. When most of these deserted the railway workings for the goldfields, Onderdonk, and his agents signed several agreements with Chinese contractors in Guangdong, Taiwan and also via Chinese companies in Victoria. Through those contracts, more than 5,000 laborers were sent from China by ship. He also recruited over 7,000 Chinese railway workers from California.
These two groups of workers were the main force for the building of Onderdonk’s seven percent of the railway’s mileage. By the end of 1881, the first group of Chinese laborers had less than 1,500, Onderdonk needed more workers, so he directly contracted Chinese businessmen in Victoria, California, and China to send many more workers to Canada. From the passage of the Chinese Immigration Act in 1885, the Canadian government began to charge a substantial head tax for each Chinese person trying to immigrate to Canada. The Chinese were the only ethnic group that had to pay such a tax. In 1923, the federal Liberal government of William Lyon Mackenzie King banned Chinese immigration with the passage of the Chinese Immigration Act of 1923, although numerous exemptions for businessmen, clergy, students and others did not end immigration entirely. Some of those Chinese Canadian workers settled in Canada after the railway was constructed. Most could not bring the rest of their families, including immediate relatives, due to government restrictions and enormous processing fees. They established Chinatowns in the cities. During the Great Depression, life was even tougher for the Chinese than it was for other Canadians. When Canada signed the United Nations Charter of Human Rights at the conclusion of the Second World War, the Canadian government had to repeal the Chinese Exclusion Act. Some educated Chinese arrived in Canada during the war as refugees. From 1947 to the early 1970s, Chinese immigrants to Canada came mostly from Hong Kong, Taiwan, or Southeast Asia. Chinese from the mainland who were eligible for the family reunification program had to visit the Canadian High Commission in Hong Kong since Canada and the PRC did not have diplomatic relations until 1970. After 1997, a significant portion of Chinese immigrants chose to move back to Hong Kong. In the 21st century, Chinese immigration from Hong Kong has dropped sharply and the largest source of Chinese immigration is from the mainland China. A smaller number have arrived from Taiwan. Today, mainland China has taken over from Hong Kong and Taiwan as the largest source of Chinese immigration. In 2010, when Mainland China became the second largest economy in the world after the United States, its economic growth sparked even greater immigration opportunities to mainland Chinese. A 2011 survey shown that 60% of Chinese millionaires plan to emigrate, where 37% of the respondents wanted to migrate to Canada. Many foreign countries such as Canada hold a very large attraction for rich Chinese, because of their better social welfare system, higher quality of education and a greater opportunity for investment. The main reasons Chinese business people want to move abroad was for some educational opportunities for their children, advanced medical treatment, worsening pollution in China mainland.
A 2011 survey shown that 60% of Chinese millionaires plan to emigrate, where 37% of the respondents wanted to migrate to Canada
The Chinese American (美籍华人) community is the largest overseas Chinese community outside of Asia. The first Chinese immigrants arrived in 1820. According to U.S. government records, 325 men are known to have arrived before 1849, when California Golden Rush drew the first significant number of laborers from China who mined for gold and performed menial labor. There were 25,000 immigrants by 1852, and 105,465 by 1880. As the numbers of Chinese laborers increased, so did the strength of anti-Chinese sentiment among other workers. This finally resulted in legislation that aimed to limit immigration of Chinese workers to the United States. In order not to create diplomatic clashes between the US and China, the latter agreed to limit immigration to the United States. The Chinese Exclusion Acts were not repealed until 1943, and then only in the interests, as the United States allied with China against Japanese, during World War II. The initial immigration group may have been as high as 90% male due to the Chinese Exclusion act, resulting in most immigrants coming with the thought of earning money, and then returning to China to start a family. Those that stayed in America faced the lack of suitable Chinese brides because Chinese women were not allowed to immigrate to the US in significant numbers after 1872. Later, as a result of the Fourteenth Amendment and the 1898 United States v. Wong Kim Ark Supreme Court decision, ethnic Chinese born in the United States became American citizens. In the mid-1850s, 70 to 150 Chinese were living in New York City and 11 of them married Irish women. In 1906, The New York Times (6 August) reported that 300 Irish American were married to Chinese men in New York, with much more cohabited. Originally at the start of the 20th century there was a 55% rate of Chinese men in New York engaging in interracial marriage which was maintained in the 1920s but in the 1930s it slid to 20%.
by Dominique Musorrafiti
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