Caramel queen or white man’s whore: #HashtagLightie, the play exploring the realities of modern mixed-race lives

Media Diversified

by Zahra Dalilah

Women and men of mixed heritage, especially black/white, are often called upon in media to provide an inoffensive face of diversity, a fetishized vision of exotic beauty or simplistically characterised as inherently confused halves of one thing or the other. The play #HashtagLightie – which recently sold out the Arcola Theatre, London before rehearsals had even begun – effortlessly defies these restrictions with a story that is relatable in its specificity and genuine in its relationships.

The show, written by Lynette Linton and directed by Rikki Beadle-Blair, centres on an Irish/Bajan family who become the targets of racial abuse on social media. Although issues of colourism and the impact of social media on young lives are not exactly new, #HashtagLightie interweaves these with a fresh look at the identities and perceptions of mixed-race women and men in British society.

hashtag-lightie-3Such meaty topics are coupled with a hilarious…

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