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After Race

After Race: Racism After Multiculturalism

Antonia Darder
Rodolfo D. Torres
Copyright Date: 2004
Published by: NYU Press
Pages: 189
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  • Book Info
    After Race
    Book Description:

    After Race pushes us beyond the old "race vs. class" debates to delve deeper into the structural conditions that spawn racism. Darder and Torres place the study of racism forthrightly within the context of contemporary capitalism. While agreeing with those who have argued that the concept of "race" does not have biological validity, they go further to insist that the concept also holds little political, symbolic, or descriptive value when employed in social science and policy research.Darder and Torres argue for the need to jettison the concept of "race," while calling adamantly for the critical study of racism. They maintain that an understanding of structural class inequality is fundamentally germane to comprehending the growing significance of racism in capitalist America.

    eISBN: 978-0-8147-2922-9
    Subjects: Sociology

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. Acknowledgments
    (pp. ix-x)
  4. After Race: An Introduction
    (pp. 1-24)

    Over a century ago, W. E. B. Du Bois inThe Souls of Black Folkproclaimed one of his most cited dictums: “The problem of the 20th Century is the problem of the color line” (1989, 10). In this book we echo his sentiment, but with a radical twist. The problem of the twenty-first century is the problem of “race”—an ideology that has served well to successfully obscure and disguise class interests behind the smokescreen of multiculturalism, diversity, difference, and more recently, whiteness. Whether the terms of analysis are “race,” “racial identity,” “race consciousness,” or “political race,” the category...

  5. 1 Does “Race” Matter? Transatlantic Perspectives on Racism after “Race Relations”
    (pp. 25-46)
    Robert Miles

    In April 1993, one year after the Los Angeles civil unrest, a major U.S. publisher published a book with the creatively ambiguous titleRace Mattersby the distinguished scholar Cornel West. The back cover of the slightly revised edition, published the following year, categorized it as a contribution to both African American studies and current affairs. The latter was confirmed by the publisher’s strategy of marketing the book as a “trade” rather than an “academic” title—this was a book for the “American public” to read. And the American public was assured that they were reading a quality product when...

  6. 2 Racialized Metropolis: Theorizing Asian American and Latino Identities and Ethnicities in Southern California
    (pp. 47-66)
    ChorSwang Ngin

    Young Suk Lee is a Korean fashion retailer in the garment district in Los Angeles. Like other retailers in Los Angeles, she hires local Latinas as sales clerks and serves a largely English and Spanish-speaking clientele.¹ According to the U.S. Census Bureau, she is classified under the Asian Pacific “race” category. Americans in general perceive her as another immigrant ethnic-entrepreneur success story. However, to her these labels are irrelevant. Her biggest concern is her inability to speak English, having grown up speaking Spanish in Peru. In 1990, she left her Latin American homeland to work in a relative’s fashion business...

  7. 3 Language Rights and the Empire of Capital
    (pp. 67-77)

    In 1996, Congress ratified a bill that designated English the federal government’s official language of business. This was the first time in U.S. history that any form of official federal language policy had been instituted. Coincidentally, it was during the same year that the campaign for Proposition 227 was initiated, which ushered in the gradual but steady demise of bilingual education in California. SinceLau v. Nichols,¹ bilingual education in California had enjoyed some legitimacy and attention within official educational public policy arenas. Proposition 227 systematically stripped away the ability of bilingual communities in California to claim bilingual instruction as...

  8. 4 Manufacturing Destinies: The Racialized Discourse of High-Stakes Testing
    (pp. 78-96)

    In the twentieth century, public education in the United States was consistently portrayed as a liberal democratizing force, operating in the name of justice, freedom, and excellence. However, closer examination of schooling practices reveals an ideology of domination that systematically reproduces, reinforces, and sustains the hegemonic forces of social control and regulation—forces linked to class oppression, gender inequalities, and racialized exclusion. Not surprisingly, therefore, popular myths related to meritocracy, the rights and privilege of the elite, and the need for state consensus have together conserved an ideology of “race” that fuels the current craze over high-stakes testing in public...

  9. 5 What’s So Critical about Critical Race Theory? A Conceptual Interrogation
    (pp. 97-117)

    Over the last half-century considerable attention has been paid to issues related to “race” and “race relations” in the social sciences, humanities, and legal studies. The debates intensified first with the groundbreakingBrown v. Board of Educationcase in 1954 and then again with the civil rights movements of the 1960s. The current debates are beginning to intensify once more as critical race theorists¹ not only retain the idea of “race” but further entrench it as a central category of analysis. Hence, the early “race” paradigm has become the new orthodoxy, retaining symbolic and political utility for many. This is...

  10. 6 Mapping Latino Studies: Critical Reflections on Class and Social Theory
    (pp. 118-142)

    The conservative climate befalling universities across the United States raises serious concerns for the future of Latino studies. This is particularly true where university discourse, victim to its own political retrenchment, wrongly concludes that questions of culture, race, diversity, and multiculturalism were sufficiently attended to in the post–civil rights era. Correspondingly, as the multicultural or diversity rhetoric of the university wanes in the marketplace of ideas, raising dollars emerges as the top priority for universities nationwide—a feat accomplished primarily by adjusting faculty scholarship and research agendas to coincide with the priorities and mandates of the corporate world. In...

  11. Notes
    (pp. 143-156)
  12. Bibliography
    (pp. 157-176)
  13. Index
    (pp. 177-188)
  14. About the Authors
    (pp. 189-189)