The Melungeon Identity Movement and the Construction of Appalachian Whiteness:
Racial classification in the United States is ultimately binary, categorizing individuals as "white" or "nonwhite." How this binary system is discursively constituted depends upon the ways in which elements of a repertoire interconnect to distribute or consolidate power and privilege across discursive contexts. Circulation of the revitalized lexeme Melungeon as a valued "object" within Appalachian discourse reveals linguistic processes by which white racial privilege is constructed and expanded, mixed-race classification excluded, and nonwhite disenfranchisement reproduced.
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