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This article does not and cannot canvass the experiences of all interracial couples who have dated at Harvard.Rather, it presents the views of three couples who agreed to discuss their stories and to add to the conversation.
Yen ’17, a Pforzheimer resident who is Asian, being part of a romance that stretches from the river to the Quad can be more problematic than being part of an interracial couple.From Buffalo NY, she stops by the podcast to talk about living in a more rural area in South Korea.Next, she talks about some of her travels she went on during her year spent in Korea.“Dami has had some situations where he felt flak from both black women and black men, because it’s the whole concept of, African Americans have this obligation to rebuild the African American family, and how’s that going to happen if they’re not marrying each other? They have also noticed that students in the black community who do support them are uncomfortable expressing their approval of interracial dating around other black students.In public conversations about mixed relationships, “people get really tense and awkward and quiet, but then afterward in privacy, they’ll be like, ‘Hey Dami, I actually really agree with what you were saying,’” Coates explains.“Acceptance has a positive connotation, almost the image of someone welcoming you with open arms, whereas tolerance is, ‘Okay, I won’t stop you,’” Coates explains.
Rebekah Calhoun is coming to the end of her first year of teaching in South Korea.
Coates, who previously dated two South Asian students at Harvard, notes that she did not experience comparable discrimination in her other interracial relationships, and that she had felt accepted by Harvard’s South Asian community.
She has noticed that her friends who are in Hispanic and white relationships or white and Asian relationships have not suffered the intolerance that she and Aladesanmi have endured while dating.
After that, Rebekah also talks about using the app ‘TINDER’ in Korea.
Also, both Adam and Rebekah explain what TINDER is and why you would use it.
(Coates published an op-ed in The Crimson about her experience being in an interracial relationship after this interview was conducted.) Before Coates and Aladesanmi launch into their negative experiences, however, they are quick to point out that they have many friends on campus who support them and their relationship.