Prince Harry's engagement to actress Meghan Markle, who is biracial, has been celebrated as a breakthrough in race relations in the United Kingdom. Yet while interracial couples are on the rise in the U. According to the latest census data, only 4 percent of British whites have settled down with someone outside their racial background. Roughly one in 10 cohabiting couples in England and Wales involve two people of different ethnicities. That's a 35 percent increase from the last time the British census was conducted, in
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The UK is becoming a racial melting pot with a surge in the number of relationships and marriages across ethnic dividing lines in the last decade, according to official figures. But while the number of people from black, Asian and mixed-race backgrounds settling down with someone from another group have all risen, white people remain by far the most segregated on the domestic front. New analysis of census figures shows that the number of people in England and Wales living with or married to someone from another group jumped 35 per cent to 2. The mixed-race population is also much younger than the wider population — almost half are under 16 compared with only 19 per cent overall. Can whirlwind romance ever lead to love less stormy?
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Interracial couples: People stare and nudge each other
Interracial marriage is a form of marriage outside a specific social group exogamy involving spouses who belong to different socially-defined races or racialized ethnicities. In the past, such marriages were outlawed in the United States and in South Africa as miscegenation. It became legal throughout the United States in , following the ruling of the Supreme Court of the United States in the case Loving v. Virginia that race-based restrictions on marriages violated the Equal Protection Clause of the United States Constitution.
Virginia case invalidated laws banning interracial marriage in the U. These days, interracial relationships are incredibly common. According to Pew research, about 17 percent of new marriages and 20 percent of cohabiting relationships are interracial or interethnic. And about one-quarter of Americans have a close relative in an interracial marriage.