Settler colonialism persists: Natsu Taylor Saito, Settler Colonialism, Race, and the Law Why Structural Racism Persists: Citizenship and Migration in the Americas, NYU Press, 2020

10Feb20

Description: How taking Indigenous sovereignty seriously can help dismantle the structural racism encountered by other people of color in the United States 

Settler Colonialism, Race, and the Law provides a timely analysis of structural racism at the intersection of law and colonialism. Noting the grim racial realities still confronting communities of color, and how they have not been alleviated by constitutional guarantees of equal protection, this book suggests that settler colonial theory provides a more coherent understanding of what causes and what can help remediate racial disparities. 

Saito attributes the origins and persistence of racialized inequities in the United States to the prerogatives asserted by its predominantly Angloamerican colonizers to appropriate Indigenous lands and resources, to profit from the labor of voluntary and involuntary migrants, and to ensure that all people of color remain “in their place.” 

By providing a functional analysis that links disparate forms of oppression, this book makes the case for the oft-cited proposition that racial justice is indivisible, focusing particularly on the importance of acknowledging and contesting the continued colonization of Indigenous peoples and lands. Settler Colonialism, Race, and the Law concludes that rather than relying on promises of formal equality, we will more effectively dismantle structural racism in America by envisioning what the right of all peoples to self-determination means in a settler colonial state.



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