Tia Mowry says she identifies as a Black woman despite being biracial

"My passion in life is to be that representation for my community of diverse women and Black women," Mowry says

Tia Mowry is grounded in her Blackness.

In a recent interview, the actress said her identity is firmly rooted in the culture as the daughter of a Black woman.

Mowry, herself a mother of two who starred alongside her twin sister, Tamera, in the hit ’90s sitcom “Sister, Sister,” appeared on “The Cool Mom Code Podcast with Lizzy Mathis” where she unpacked how her multiracial household and biracial background influences her self-identity.

Tia Mowry, WeightWatchers, WW, theGrio.com
Tia Mowry attends Revolve x AT&T Present Revolve Winterland on December 08, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images)

“I identify myself as a Black woman,” Mowry told Mathis roughly 38 minutes into their hour-long conversation, which was released on Wednesday. “My mother is Black, you know what I mean? My mother is a strong woman.”

Mowry, 45, said that watching her mother navigate life in America as an Afro-Bahamian woman was crucial in formulating her own self-image.

“My mother is dark-skinned. I have seen and felt her struggles as being a Black woman. So, to me — of course, my dad is white — I am an extension of my mother,” Mowry said.

She explained that many get “stuck” processing how having parents of different racial backgrounds adds additional complexities to the already intricate topic of racial identity. 

However, she added, because of the color of her skin, when she goes out into the world, she is seen and treated within society as a Black woman.

“I identify myself as a Black woman. That is how I’ve been viewed. That is how I’ve been seen. And I remember studying in school that if you have a single drop of Black blood, you’re Black,” she said.

Mowry referred to the centuries-old “one-drop rule,” a long-standing U.S. legal principle used prominently in the 20th century to classify mixed-race Americans as Black, so long as they were verified to have any amount of Black ancestry.

Although the rule, often used as a tool of segregation, is no longer recognized in the eyes of the law, it remains a common facet of contemporary ideas and discourse surrounding biracial identity.

“That’s how we were raised, and that’s how I consider myself,” Mowry said, adding that she is passionate about representing strong Black women in the various arenas of her life as a mother, sitcom actress and entrepreneur.

“I feel like that is my purpose. My passion in life is to be that representation for my community of diverse women and Black women,” Mowry said.

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