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Discipline, Performativity, and Struggles against Subjection
Nadine Ehlers examines the constructions of blackness and whiteness cultivated in the U.S. imaginary and asks, how do individuals become racial subjects? She analyzes anti-miscegenation law, statutory definitions of race, and the rhetoric surrounding the phenomenon of racial passing to provide critical accounts of racial categorization and norms, the policing of racial behavior, and the regulation of racial bodies as they are underpinned by demarcations of sexuality, gender, and class. Ehlers places the work of Michel Foucault, Judith Butler's account of performativity, and theories of race into conversation to show how race is a form of discipline, that race is performative, and that all racial identity can be seen as performative racial passing. She tests these claims through an excavation of the 1925 "racial fraud" case of Rhinelander v. Rhinelander and concludes by considering the possibilities for racial agency, extending Foucault's later work on ethics and "technologies of the self" to explore the potential for racial transformation.
Eating Bodies in the 19th Century
The act of eating is both erotic and violent, as one wholly consumes the object being eaten. At the same time, eating performs a kind of vulnerability to the world, revealing a fundamental interdependence between the eater and that which exists outside her body. Racial Indigestion explores the links between food, visual and literary culture in the nineteenth-century United States to reveal how eating produces political subjects by justifying the social discourses that create bodily meaning.
Combing through a visually stunning and rare archive of children's literature, architectural history, domestic manuals, dietetic tracts, novels and advertising, Racial Indigestion tells the story of the consolidation of nationalist mythologies of whiteness via the erotic politics of consumption. Less a history of commodities than a history of eating itself, the book seeks to understand how eating became a political act, linked to appetite, vice, virtue, race and class inequality and, finally, the queer pleasures and pitfalls of a burgeoning commodity culture. In so doing, Racial Indigestion sheds light on contemporary “foodie” culture's vexed relationship to nativism, nationalism and race privilege.
Performing Childhood and Race from Slavery to Civil Rights
Latinos and Asian Americans Living Beyond the Racial Divide
The divide over race is usually framed as one over Black and White. Sociologist Eileen O’Brien is interested in that middle terrain, what sits in the ever-increasing gray area she dubbed the racial middle.
The Racial Middle, tells the story of the other racial and ethnic groups in America, mainly Latinos and Asian Americans, two of the largest and fastest-growing minorities in the United States. Using dozens of in-depth interviews with people of various ethnic and generational backgrounds, Eileen O’Brien challenges the notion that, to fit into American culture, the only options available to Latinos and Asian Americans are either to become white or to become brown.
Instead, she offers a wholly unique analysis of Latinos and Asian Americans own distinctive experiences—those that aren’t typically White nor Black. Though living alongside Whites and Blacks certainly frames some of their own identities and interpretations of race, O’Brien keenly observes that these groups struggles with discrimination, their perceived isolation from members of other races, and even how they define racial justice, are all significant realities that inform their daily lives and, importantly, influence their opportunities for advancement in society.
A refreshing and lively approach to understanding race and ethnicity in the twenty-first century, The Racial Middle gives voice to Latinos and Asian-Americans place in this country’s increasingly complex racial mosaic.
Law, Intimacy, and the White State in Alabama, 1865-1954
In November 2001, the state of Alabama opened a referendum on its long-standing constitutional prohibition against interracial marriage. A bill on the state ballot offered the opportunity to relegate the state's antimiscegenation law to the dustbin of history. The measure passed, but the margin was alarmingly slim: more than half a million voters, 40 percent of those who went to the polls, voted to retain a racist and constitutionally untenable law. Julie Novkov's Racial Union explains how and why, nearly forty years after the height of the civil rights movement, Alabama struggled to repeal its prohibition against interracial marriage---the last state in the Union to do so. Novkov's compelling history of Alabama's battle over miscegenation shows how the fight shaped the meanings of race and state over ninety years. Novkov's work tells us much about the sometimes parallel, sometimes convergent evolution of our concepts of race and state in the nation as a whole. "A remarkably nuanced account of interlocked struggles over race, gender, class and state power. Novkov's site is Alabama, but her insights are for all America." ---Rogers M. Smith, Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of Political Science, University of Pennsylvania "Hannah Arendt shocked Americans in the 1950s by suggesting that interracial intimacy was the true measure of a society's racial order. Julie Novkov's careful, illuminating, powerful book confirms Arendt's judgment. By ruling on who may be sexually linked with whom, Alabama's courts and legislators created a racial order and even a broad political order; Novkov shows us just how it worked in all of its painful, humiliating power." ---Jennifer L. Hochschild, Henry LaBarre Jayne Professor of Government, Professor of African and African American Studies, and Harvard College Professor
Collages, Fragments, Postcards, Ruins
Martone, as Peter Turchi has said, looks under stones the rest of us leave unturned.” So, what is he really up to when he dwells on the make of Malcolm X’s eyeglasses or the runner-up names for Snow White’s seven dwarfs? In My Mother Invents a Tradition,” Martone tells how his mom, as the dean of girls at a brand-new high school in Fort Wayne, Indiana, constructed a nostalgic past out of nothing.” Sitting at their dining room table, she came up with everything from the school colors (orange and brown) to the yearbook title (Bear Tracks). Look, and then look again, Martone is saying. You never know. I never know.”
Love, Power, and Desire among Asian American/ White Couples
Racing Romance sheds light on the bonds between whites and Asian Americans, an important topic that has not garnered well-deserved attention until now. Using primary source narratives and interviews, Kumiko Nemoto addresses the contradictions and tensions-a result of race, class, and gender-that Asian Americans and whites experience. Racing Romance reveals how "progressive" interracial relationships remain shaped by the logic of patriarchy and gender inherent to the ideal of marriage, family, and nation in America, even as this ideal is juxtaposed with discourses of multiculturalism and color blindness.
Transforming Our Conceptions of Self and Other to Build an Inclusive Society
Renowned social justice advocate john a. powell persuasively argues that we have not achieved a post-racial society and that there is much work to do to redeem the American promise of inclusive democracy. Culled from a decade of writing about social justice and spirituality, these meditations on race, identity, and social policy provide an outline for laying claim to our shared humanity and a way toward healing ourselves and securing our future. Racing to Justice challenges us to replace attitudes and institutions that promote and perpetuate social suffering with those that foster relationships and a way of being that transcends disconnection and separation.
A Latino/a Perspective
The apostle Paul wrote that "All of you are one in Christ Jesus." Given Paul’s vision of God’s kingdom defined by the breakdown of all distinctions and relationships of dominationno longer Jew or Greek, slave or free, male or femalehow do we make sense of ethnic particularity within the church’s theological formulations?
Racism and God-Talk explores the biblical and religious dimensions of North American racism while highlighting examples of resistance within the Christian religious tradition. Social historians have seldom analyzed the problematic of race from a primarily theological perspective. This volume undertakes a critical examination of explicitly theological and confessional perspectives for understanding and transforming North American racism.
Rosario Rodriguez offers insights from Latino/a theology for broader scholarly and social discussions concerning racism, borders, and immigration. The first to analyze race and racism from a Latino/a theological perspective, the volume makes use of a broadened conceptualization of "mestizaje," or mutual cultural exchange, to challenge the church to recognize the effects of racial and ethnic particularity in all theological construction.