Black and settler or black and indigenous? George J. Sefa Dei, ‘Blackness and Colonial Settlerhood: A Purposeful Provocation’, in George J. Sefa Dei, Reframing Blackness and Black Solidarities through Anti-colonial and Decolonial Prisms, Springer, 2017, pp. 81-117


Abstract: This chapter seeks to clarify and simultaneously trouble several key concepts that inform or have been assumed through the popular call to “decolonize anti-racism.” For example, Lawrence and Dua’s (2005) thought-provoking article Decolonizing Antiracism. These concepts include Euro-colonialism and settler colonialism; settlerhood and settler White colonial discourse and settler colonialism; complicity and implication; and responsibility. My argument is that neither I, nor any other Black/African residing on Turtle Island, can be referred as a settler, and charged with complicity as Lawrence and Dua (2005) long ago claimed. Instead, the chapter provides new coordinates for collective and global mobilization by troubling the politics of “decolonizing solidarity” as the intellectual flavor of the moment. This is done by offering Indigeneity as an international category and as a coordinate for decolonizing (and) antiracist work. Ideas put forward in the chapter are aided by many who add complexity and nuance to decolonizing (and) anti-racist scholarship and praxis. It is opined that theorizing the Indigenous as an international category allows us to mobilize as an international category and as an international collective of multiple anti-racist communities that can build solidarities with Indigenous Peoples and their decolonizing work. Indigeneity provides a category, and a collective, that can mobilize support for decolonizing work that reaches Indigenous Peoples across the world.

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