As recognizable as J.Lo‘s become, the mixed reactions to her Motown tribute at the 2019 Grammys underscored the fact that not everyone’s in complete agreement about her racial identity—and the fact that it’s technically none of their business did nothing to stem the tide of Tweets and Reddit threads debating the issue.
That Jennifer Lopez is not a Black woman is a fact nothing (save for a surprising 23andMe result) could call into question. But whether she’s white is another matter entirely.
So, what is Jennifer Lopez’s race? Any attempt to answer that question has to start with the difference between “race” and “ethnicity.”
Jennifer Lopez was born and raised in the Castle Hill section of the Bronx, a borough of New York City. Her family came to New York from Ponce, Puerto Rico’s largest city after San Juan. Puerto Rico is an unincorporated U.S. territory.
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Jennifer Lopez’s Career Is a Portrait of Her Puerto Rican Pride
— CaliRican 🇵🇷 (@CaliRicans) June 26, 2019