A Boston Globe series of occasional articles about blacks and Latinos living in metro Boston.
Before Tiffany Dufu moved from Seattle to Boston last August, some of her friends and co-workers were eager to assure her how much she would love her new city. Only in retrospect did she note that all of those singing Boston's praises were white.
The Morgans, both 33-year-old Boston natives, navigate distinctly different courses through the subtle issues of race in suburban Boston. Lily is acutely aware of the racial subtext of her surroundings. Shaun is determined to move beyond it. They argue about how to teach their brown-skinned, curly-haired boys about racism.
Boston may boast a population thats 25 percent African-American and 14 percentHispanic, but those Census ﬁgures are difﬁcult to discern from a casual glance at the citys social centers. A few Latino and black faces occasionally add color to the hottest restaurants on Newbury Street. A handful of people of color populate the clubs in downtown Boston. And those numbers dont jump appreciably when visiting beaches, sports arenas, and malls in the area.
The questions from co-workers started soon after Rosario Ubiera-Minaya began working as an internship coordinator two years ago in the Peabody Essex Museum's education department. ''Are you in security?," someone would inevitably ask the caramel-colored, 28-year-old Dominicana . ''Do you work in guest services?"
David Blanding, cellphone at his ear, strides across Commonwealth Avenue and darts into a CVS to buy candy for an evening meeting of the Boston University student group Latinos Unidos. By the time he leaves the store, Blanding's encouraged the black high school girl working the cash register to apply to BU.
Within a year of moving to the Boston area toward the end of 2000, Raymond Johnson began lobbying his wife, Idella, to leave a region whose coldness -- in every sense of that word -- had baffled, frustrated, and ultimately alienated him.
Claudette Crouse is black; her husband Henry is white. That has given them a unique vantage from which to observe and to experience firsthand the evolving racial dynamic in Greater Boston.