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Toxic Waste and Race in Twenty-First Century America

Neighborhood Poverty and Racial Composition in the Siting of Hazardous Waste Facilities

Michael Mascarenhas, Ryken Grattet, and Kathleen Mege

Environmental justice studies investigate the role of race, class, and other social attributes in the uneven distribution of environmental hazards. A major line of inquiry has been about the placement of toxic waste facilities and the demographic

Open access

A non‐essentialist theory of race

The case of an Afro‐indigenous village in northern Peru

Tamara Hale

In the village of Yapatera, Peru, there exists a folk theory of race which posits that humans cannot be divided into mutually exclusive racial groups and that personhood is both physiologically and socially ‘mixed’. By engaging with the psychological literature on racial essentialism (i.e. the tendency to view humans in terms of discrete categories, as if they were natural kinds), this article digs deeper into the local folk theory of race. Experimental tasks were designed to test the inductive potential of race and revealed that villagers are far more likely to use other social categories (class, religion, kinship and place of origins) than race to base their inferences. The article discusses the use of experimental tasks as a vehicle for a different sort of conversation between ethnographer and informants.

Open access

Katharina Schramm

From the early 2000s onward, scientists, politicians, and intellectuals have presented the South African gene pool as a new archive for the new nation, suggesting a non-racial unity in diversity through common human origins. In this discourse, population genomics and genetic ancestry allude to metaphors of shared kinship to overcome the legacies of race. However, a focus on the underlying practices of measuring and classification reveals how the genomic archive is implicated in the history of apartheid and its racialized subjectivities. Similarly, individual interpretations of genetic ancestry show that race is constantly brought forth in this archival process. The genomic archive interweaves measuring practices in the sciences with the politics of social and biographical experience—a relationship that is at the heart of genetic genealogies.

Open access

Joel Modiri

Pan-Africanism, African philosophy, and critical race theory. 7 While birthed in the historical conditions of colonisation and apartheid and resistance to them in ‘South Africa’, the Azanian tradition works within a continental Pan Africanist

Open access

Cristiana Bastos

plantation–race nexus, and highlight the renewed interest in plantations raised by contemporary approaches to the environment, the Anthropocene, cropscapes, and nonhuman agencies. Next, I compare different modes of instrumentalizing and displaying the memory

Open access

Doing race in Europe

Contested pasts and contemporary practices

Markus Balkenhol and Katharina Schramm

In this introduction to the special section on ‘Doing Race in Europe’ we take up the notion of race as an ‘absent presence’ to deal with two related issues. First, we consider the historically contested position of race in the discipline of anthropology. Second, we think through the notion of an ‘absent presence’ conceptually and methodologically so as to develop a relational approach enabling us to analyse race in practice. We take as a point of departure the idea that we cannot know race in advance, and that we therefore need to study how it comes about, and how it is made and unmade in specific situations. We therefore call for renewed ethnographic attention to how race is made absent and present in multiple ways. This special section is the first joint publication of the EASA network for the anthropology of race and ethnicity (ARE).

Open access

Black citizenship, Afropolitan critiques

Vernacular heritage‐making and the negotiation of race in the Netherlands

Marleen Witte

This paper offers a new perspective on the relationship between the contested terrain of race and the politics of heritage and belonging in postcolonial Europe. Presenting material from the Netherlands, I argue that instead of reproducing the dyadic white‐majority–black‐minority framework, we must situate the negotiation of race in the triangular relationship between the persistent ‘whiteness’ of Dutch nationhood, the country’s postcolonial Afro‐Caribbean population and its more recent African postmigrant population. Discussing ‘African heritage’ projects by young Dutch people of Afro‐Caribbean and Ghanaian descent respectively, I discern two different critiques of the racialised exclusivity of Dutchness. Struggles for ‘Black citizenship’ seek recognition of African heritage as part of Dutch colonial history and seek to inscribe Blackness into Dutch nationhood; ‘Afropolitan’ celebrations of ‘being African in the world’ not only question the primacy of Dutch national belonging but also resist hegemonic formulations of Blackness. In this ‘trialogue’, race gets done and undone in intersection with other axes of difference and inequality, including citizenship status, migration trajectory and African origin. The triadic framework the paper advances not only conveys the complexity of racial dynamics in heritage‐making, but also sensitises to alternative understandings of belonging and alternative sources of critique.

Open access

Relative Risk

Measuring Kinship for Future Health in US Genetic Counseling

Anna Jabloner

Genetic counselors in the US assess disease risks by drawing on family histories, genetic tests, and patients’ racial, ethnic, national, or religious self-identifications. The bodily risks of kinship articulated by family histories can be defused by genetic tests that highlight the contingency of biological inheritance and decouple kinship from genetics. However, such tests, as well as self-identifying patients, also entwine genetic risk with older indicators of kinship: biologically understood race and ethnicity. Across these scales, counselors calculate relative risks to the future health of individuals, in the process measuring kinship as genealogical closeness, genetic dis/similarity, and biocultural race and ethnicity. As counselors personalize the universal promises of genomics at a biomedical nexus of risk and prophylaxis, they tap into anxieties about the changed natures of American kinship.

Open access

Emergent Police States

Racialized Pacification and Police Moralism from Rio's Favelas to Bolsonaro

Tomas Salem and Bjørn Enge Bertelsen

transforms the exercise of governmental powers at the imperial core, as well as shape dominant political discourses around authority, race, gender, and the rule of law (see Leite 2017 ). Paul Gilroy's treatment of imperialism offers additional insight into

Open access

Matthias Pauwels

Welcome to the Minefield that is Race Humour In today's supposedly enlightened era, with great strides being made in the fight against racism driven by global anti-racist campaigns such as Black Lives Matter, it might be curious, not to say