IN THIS interesting entry about interracial marriage and the movie Mississippi Masala, the reader Jane. S. described the racial dynamics in the film. She used the phrase, “race trumps everything” to explain the end result of the interactions between the movie’s African blacks and Indians. A reader was very upset by this particular comment. She interpreted it in a literal way to mean that there are no human loyalties or obligations that transcend race.
Jane, who was once married to a man from a different race, now explains her meaning, which was that race often trumps the very best intentions in marriage. She writes:
Mrs. Campbell seems quite upset about the phrase “race trumps everything” and wants to know what I mean by that. To be honest, I don’t know precisely, so I’ll go back to the place where I first used it.
The Indian attorney in Mississippi Masala is born and raised in Uganda, and considers it his beloved homeland; he spends his entire life in good relations with blacks, he has a black friend he loves like a brother. All that goes out the window in a heartbeat, and he and his family are deported, just because of their race. He is afraid that his daughter may find herself in a similar circumstance, if she marries a guy from another race. There is no point in saying things like that don’t happen; they already have. Read More »