Brown is not an identity. Brown, along with its nominal form, brownness, are also not objects of knowledge in the ways that identity markers such as “Latina/o” or “Chicana/o” are in the late twentieth and early twenty- first centuries. The more popularly used ethnic marker aligned with a certain hue or accent of brownness, “Latina/o” is widely understood as designating a population historically displaced from Latin  America and living in the United States. Other identity variants exist within the Latina/o population that are assigned  to people from specific national and cultural heritages; the most widely used of these is the politically charged banner of Chicana/o, which signifies a person of Mexican descent or origin living in the U.S. Southwest. The definitional incoherence of Latina/o—let alone Chicana/o, Cuban American, Nuyorican, and so on— reveals how not all identities capture the people, lives, and experiences they seek to  demarcate.  As  a  …

This essay may be found on page 25 of the printed volume.

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