The days of ethnic minorities being labeled as a Latino-American, African-American or Asian-American may soon come to an end following the launch of a book Hyphened-Nation that has sparked the social movement, Don’t Check the Box.
There is no doubt that hyphenation creates separation and many problems for individuals placed in these categories. In fact, it was former American President, Theodore Roosevelt, who said: “A Hyphenated American is not an American at all.” But Hyphened -Nation is on a mission to change all that.
The movement was founded by Nicole Draffen and was inspired by her travels overseas. She said: “Living abroad was an eye-opening experience. I grew to understand certain aspects of American culture better, the longer I lived overseas. The differences were startling, and lead me on a journey to understand why the United States is one of the only, if not the
The movement also inspired the book, Hyphened-Nation: Don’t Check the Box. This dynamic book is about the author’s insights while living in the UK and her experience of being treated as an American, rather than as a hyphenated one. It also focuses on ways the U.S. and Europe differ culturally via media, and how a bridge might be created.
Draffen writes in her book: “The hyphenation of your nationality minimizes your standing in the nation. The hyphen might as well act as a minus sign. Both are represented by the same symbol and have the same consequences. Just as a minus “takes away” a numerical value, its counterpart hyphen lessens the value of your nationality.”