“One Drop of Love”: A Personal Performance of Race

Written by Division I Media & Journalism reporters Luca and Esme

On September 21st, the entire Meridian community attended a special one-woman performanced entitled “One Drop of Love.” It was written and performed by Fanshen Cox DiGiovanni and told the story of her life, particularly focusing on her struggles with race as a biracial woman. Cox DiGiovanni also touched on how perspectives on race have evolved over time -- particularly by looking at census changes -- and how race is viewed by different cultures both in America and internationally. In fact, the performance piece was called “One Drop Of Love” because, when slavery was legal in the United States, law held that “one drop of African blood makes you a slave.” The piece was both saddening and powerful.

Cox DiGiovanni used many unique strategies to engage the audience. She interacted with students and teachers, she shared family photographs, and she portrayed everyone in the piece, including her father, mother, and brother. She also talked openly about how, in certain circumstances she is considered more black, while in others she is considered more white. Cox DiGiovanni learned what it meant to be a biracial woman in different places, while sometimes having the “privilege” to choose how she was seen. The event was organized by the Social Justice Committee with the help of their advisor Nathan Sokol-Margolis, who said he was excited to host Cox DiGiovanni “because of the nature of the show,” which creatively explores many of the themes also discussed in Humanities classes at Meridian.