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Most recently, Holland’s (2017) research has uncovered early twentieth century relationships between South Asian men and white women in Sheffield, while grassroots oral history projects have illuminated community histories of interraciality in Nottingham and Manchester.10 Furthermore, as Caballero and Aspinall (2018) have highlighted, black and other racialised populations in Britain were not simply a preserve of city life, or of the working classes.
As such, numerous white Britons and people of colour found themselves engaging in what Lamont and Aksartova (2002, p.
Tudors, Stuarts, Georgians, Victorians and Edwardians of colour and their interracial families were thus found across a wide span of British social spheres and geographical locales, marking ‘a historically unnoticed but significant assimilatory aspect’ of the history of people of colour in the country (Habib 2008, p. However, as Balachandran notes (Balachandran 2014, p.
546), the history of racial mixing and mixedness has long been presented to us largely through the views of ‘outsiders’, most notably the ‘prurient gaze of middle-class observers peering through lens clouded by class, racial, gender, sexual and political anxieties’.
The popular conception of interraciality in Britain is one that frequently casts mixed racial relationships, people and families as being a modern phenomenon.
Yet, as scholars are increasingly discussing, interraciality in Britain has much deeper and diverse roots, with racial mixing and mixedness now a substantively documented presence at least as far back as the Tudor era.
But what happens when his wife brings forth a black man’s child?