Caroline Fermin was born in Houston, Texas and raised in New Orleans, Louisiana. Her mother, a white Southerner, stayed at home throughout Fermin's childhood. Her father, an immigrant from the Dominican Republic, was a tenured professor at Tulane University in New Orleans. Fermin attended the New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts and received a B.F.A. in dance from the Juilliard School in New York City. She later lived in Fort Greene, Brooklyn and worked as a professional dancer and dance teacher.
“When we did the census a few times, she would be on the phone with them and they’d be like, 'Well, whatever language you speak at home is what race you are.' My mom would be furious. Having to choose I felt like was the hardest part."
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Date: March 17, 2013
Citation: Oral history interview with Caroline Fermin, 2013, 2012.019.042; Crossing Borders, Bridging Generations Oral History Collection, 2011.019; Brooklyn Historical Society.
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