After Race: Racism after Multiculturalism

After Race: Racism after Multiculturalism

After Race: Racism after Multiculturalism

After Race: Racism after Multiculturalism

Synopsis

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.

Excerpt

With Robert Miles

The survival of the United States as a democracy depends on the
dismantling of the race concept. (Graves 2001, 11)

In April 1993, one year after the Los Angeles civil unrest, a major U.S. publisher published a book with the creatively ambiguous title Race Matters by 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 they were told that its author had “built a reputation as one of the most eloquent voices in America’s racial debate.”

Some two years later, the Los Angeles Times (February 20, 1995) published an article by its science writer under the headline “Scientists Say Race Has No Biological Basis.” the opening paragraph ran as follows:

Researchers adept at analyzing the genetic threads of human diversity
said Sunday that the concept of race—the source of abiding cultural and
political divisions in American society—simply has no basis in funda
mental human biology. Scientists should abandon it.

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