'The Third Space': cross-cultural and multi-racial identities

A special edition of MOTS PLURIELS, to be published in 1998, invites contributions on the subject of inter-racial, multi-racial, multi-ethnic, or cross-cultural identities. The US Masters golf champion, Tiger Woods, was recently at the centre of a debate on the subject of racial terminology. Some African-American commentators criticised his decision to describe himself as 'multi-racial' rather than 'black'. He was weakening the solidarity of black politics, it was argued.

Just as the binary gender division, man and woman, may be complicated by a range of border-crossing identities, so the fundamental binary race division (us and them, white and black) is challenged by the complexity of inter-racial combination. Does such multiplicity weaken the possibility of challenges to dominant discourses of power? Or does it rather expose 'the limits of any claim to a singular or autonomous sign of difference - be it class, gender, or race'. The author of this last suggestion, Homi Bhabha, describes a 'third space', which holds 'assignations of social differences - where difference is neither One nor the Other but something else besides'.

The multiple and problematic terminology by which 'third space' identities may be designated is itself an indication of rapidly shifting meanings in this area. We look forward to hearing from those for whom such cross-border experience is a source of reflection and insight.

€ Short articles (2,500-3000 words) written in English or in French and original works of creative fiction (no more than 4 to 5 pages) can be sent to the guest editor of this issue:

Dr Maureen Perkins
Department of History
University of Western Australia
Nedlands, Australia 6907
or via email to [email protected]

€ The deadline for submission is the first week of May 1998.

MOTS PLURIELS is a refereed electronic and international journal open to those wishing to share their point of view on important contemporary world issues. Manuscripts are reviewed by expert readers and publication is dependent on their approval.

Themes for past issues have been:

€ Time
€ Aids
€ Racism
€ Civil wars, violence, economic loss of control and literary texts.

MOTS PLURIELS can be found at http:/