My American Meltingpot

Lori L. Tharps is an author, journalist, college professor and Mom. A Black woman married to a Spanish man with three brown-ish, bilingual children, her life is quite colorful. She created the blog MyAmericanMeltingpot so she could write about the things she cares most about in the world - books, babies, cultural fusion, travel, pop culture and food - without being edited. 

Lori L. Tharps is the author of three books. Hair Story: Untangling the Roots of Black Hair in America, Kinky Gazpacho: Life, Love & Spain and the novel, Substitute Me. Even though her publicist suggests otherwise, Lori likes to blog under the pseudonym, Ms. Meltingpot.

Author Crush #437: Mat Johnson & Loving Day

Hello Meltingpot Readers, Pardon my absence. I was in the woods of Northern Pennsylvania on a writing retreat all last week. It was absolutely exquisite and I made a lot of progress on my new book, Same Family, Different Colors ....more

Defining Blackness: My Take on Rachel Dolezal

Rachel Dolezal, she’s not really Black, but she feels like she is in her head. It’s not as though there hasn’t already been enough written about Rachel Dolezal, the White woman from Montana who has been passing for Black for the last decade. Still, I feel I have to add my two cents to the raging controversy over this woman’s actions ....more

Will “White People Believe Anything” About Race?

Hello Meltingpot Readers, Filmmaker Lacey Schwartz at the Brooklyn Historical Society Pardon the delay in posting, but we had some technical difficulties. But I’m back now. And so happy to be here to tell you about a great event I went to on Monday in Brooklyn ....more

Asian Americans and Skin Color Politics

Hello Meltingpot Readers, 2013 Korean beauty pageant contestants. Skin color politics often = beauty politics. As most of you know, I’m hard at work on my new book, Same Family, Different Colors ....more

#WomensLives: Life on the Border Between Europe and Africa

Hello Melitngpot Readers, A view of Ceuta, where Spain and Morocco meet. Photo from LookLex If you’ve read my memoir, Kinky Gazpacho, then you know I’ve lived in both Spain and Morocco, so these recent stories about life in the border city of Ceuta have caught my attention. Ceuta is a city on the cusp of Africa, but it is a Spanish territory ....more

May is Mixed Experience History Month!

Hello Meltingpot Readers, Happy Monday! Happy May! Happy Mixed Experience History Month 2015! ...more

#Flashback Friday: Motherhood as a Competitive Sport

Hello Meltingpot Readers, Recently a New York Times Op-Ed piece ran that suggested Black mothers were better mothers than White mothers. Besides the multiple comments berating the writer for daring to suggest such a thing on the New York Times website, one Black woman wrote a pretty scathing take down of the Times piece in the Washington Post, pretty much shaming the Times writer for resorting to Mammy stereotypes to promote Black motherhood. Mommy Competitions go global And all of this just further perpetuates the mommy wars that really, in my opinion, is a lot of media hype and an attempt to commercialize our most fundamental job in this world, raising our children ....more

Me and Toni Morrison: On the Same Page About Skin Color Politics

Hello Meltingpot Readers, Toni Morrison in Philly, signing my book. #Authorswoon Have any of you read Toni Morrison’s new novel, God Help the Child? Not only have I read it, I had the chance to see Ms ....more

#WomensLives: 50 Years of Nigerian Hairstyles

Hello Meltingpot Readers, Ojeikere’s stunning hair photos are captured in a book. Not so long ago I shared with you that I would be highlighting some great stories about women around the world in partnership with PRI’s #WomensLives initiative. Well, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to share this story, posted today, about the work of the late Nigerian photographer J.D. Okhai Ojeikere, who captured over 50 years of Nigerian hairstyles in stunning black and white photographs ....more

Yo, Is That Colorist?: Australian Newscaster Praises Light Skin Twin

Hello Meltingpot Readers, Lucy and Maria, more than just colors. I think you all know I’m working on a book called Same Family, Different Colors where I’m looking at skin color variations in nuclear families and how those skin color differences affect family dynamics. Often times I’m hearing stories about minute variations between brown and browner, but every now and again there are extreme skin color differences that are impossible to ignore, both inside and outside the home ....more