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Race Archives - Institute of the Black World 21st Century

A print of U.S. President Andrew Jackson at the Battle of Tallushatchee, 1813.

This Land Is Not Your Land

By Editors' Choice

The Ethnic Cleansing of Native Americans By David Treuer — In his first annual message to the U.S. Congress, in 1829, U.S. President Andrew Jackson—a slave-owning real estate speculator already famous for burning down Creek settlements and hounding the survivors of the Creek War of 1813–14—called for the “voluntary” migration of Native Americans to lands west of the Mississippi River. Six months later, in the spring of 1830, he signed…

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Steven Perry as Henry Temple in “The Big Tall Wish,” a Season 1 episode of The Twilight Zone

Tele-visionary Blackness

By Commentaries/Opinions

By Brandy Monk-Payton, Public Books — I. CHANNELING FREEDOM DREAMS A Black boy presses his forehead and cheek against the television. He shuts his eyes, clasps his hands together, and mutters fervently. It is a scene from “The Big Tall Wish,” a Season 1 episode of The Twilight Zone. The episode, which was released in 1960, follows Bolie Jackson (Ivan Dixon), a washed-up prizefighter who has lost all confidence in his…

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Bill Clinton golfing with his wealthy friends on August 5, 2000, in Martha's Vineyard, MA.

The Racial Wealth Gap Is About the Upper Classes

By Commentaries/Opinions

By Matt Bruenig, Jacobin — In light of the recent resurgence of Black Lives Matter protests, there has been renewed discussion of the racial wealth gap and how to close it (Nikole Hannah-Jones, Annie Lowrey). I have written on this topic many times in the past (I, II, III, IV). One thing I have tried to emphasize over the years, which I will do again here in a different way, is that due to…

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‘Jacob’s Dream’ by Salvador Rosa (c. 1665).

How did ‘white’ become a metaphor for all things good?

By Commentaries/Opinions

We want to be whitelisted and not blacklisted for jobs. White lies make stretching the truth okay, but you don’t want to receive a black mark on your record. By Aradhna Krishna — Shortly after George Floyd’s death, one of my friends texted me that Floyd wasn’t necessarily a bad person, but, pointing to his prior stints in prison, added that “he wasn’t lily-white either.” Soon thereafter, I read an article in…

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The grand buildings of Bordeaux, France, were financed, in part, by the trans-Atlantic slave trade. The city has moved to address that past.

George Floyd’s Killing Forces Wider Debate on France’s Slave-Trading Past

By Editors' Choice

Rather than tear down statues, some argue that the past should not be obliterated, but remembered and explained. By Norimitsu Onishi, The New York Times — BORDEAUX, France — At a bend in the river, a succession of stately stone buildings, each more imposing than the last, stretches along the left bank. Their elegant 18th-century facades had helped Bordeaux, already famous for its wineries, become a UNESCO World Heritage site.…

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Protesters chant “Say His Name — George Floyd!” near a memorial for George Floyd in Minneapolis on June 2.

Poll: Black Americans outraged by George Floyd’s death, but optimistic about change after nationwide protests

By News & Current Affairs

More than a third of black Americans say there was an occasion when they feared being hurt by a police officer. By Cleve R. Wootson Jr., Scott Clement and Emily Guskin, The Washington Post — Jackie Beckley believes the video of the final moments of George Floyd’s life may finally help white friends and colleagues understand what she has labored to tell them about her experience as a black woman:…

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Black Lives Matter

Time for Republicans to Give Black Voters a Real Choice

By Commentaries/Opinions

By Robert Hornak, The Schpiel — In recent days many people whose politics lean center-right have been trying to give “the facts” on racism in America. This completely misses the point and is nothing more than a distraction from the need to address a real and very serious problem and from the larger conversation we need to have on race relations in America. Republicans should immediately please stop. And listen….

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George Floyd protest

After George Floyd and Juneteenth

By Commentaries/Opinions

What’s ahead for the movement, the election, and the protesters? By David Remnick, The New Yorker — Tennille Newbold is a twenty-six-year-old medical assistant at a community health center in Manhattan. In the midst of a Juneteenth celebration in Central Park—a kind of barbecue-picnic political rally, on the grounds of what was once Seneca Village, where freed black people and Irish immigrants lived—she stepped to a microphone and announced that…

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Former slaves harvesting for their own profit.

Land loss has plagued black America since emancipation – is it time to look again at ‘black commons’ and collective ownership?

By Reparations

Black farmers own far less land than they did in 1910 and the racial gap in homeownership is at the highest level for 50 years. By Julian Agyeman and Kofi Boone — Underlying the recent unrest sweeping U.S. cities over police brutality is a fundamental inequity in wealth, land and power that has circumscribed black lives since the end of slavery in the U.S. The “40 acres and a mule” promised to…

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Protests in Spain

Racism, Xenophobia and Police Brutality on the Rise in Spain

By News & Current Affairs

By Youssef Ouled, Rights International Spain — Rights International Spain and the Implementation Team of the International Decade for People of African Descent in Spain have published a report on racism and xenophobia during the COVID-19 state of alarm in Spain. The report examines manifestations of racism and xenophobia between March 15 and May 2 during the COVID-19 state of alarm in Spain. The investigation includes more than 70 racist…

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