A Defense of the Charlottesville Counter-Protesters

Not all forms of violence are created equal. On August 12, violence unfolded at a white supremacist “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. President Trump’s immediate reaction placed equal blame for the violence on the white supremacists and those that protested their rally. “We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of […]

Tackling the Elephant in the Room

A Guide to Teaching Race after Charlottesville The “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville embodied the ongoing racist ideologies that have permeated the United States since its inception. As a biological anthropologist, I was simultaneously horrified and unsurprised by the events that unfolded. I reflected on what I, as an anthropologist, could do about it—now. […]

Trump’s Wall and the Dictator Aesthetic

Well, look, we’re going to have a border. It’s going to be a real border, and we’re going to build a wall and it’s going to be a serious wall. Just remember that. And you remember I said it…. It’s going to be a serious wall. It’s going to be a real wall. It’s not going to […]

On the Lookout

The Kharij Collective  In February 2017, we came together as the Kharij Collective and organized a national teach-in on the Executive Order that came to be known as the “Muslim Ban.” The teach-in, comprised of academics, activists, and lawyers, addressed the specifics of the order, while also contextualizing it within a longer history of anti-Muslim […]

The Detroitists

Reflections of Detroit Ethnographers at the Anniversary of the 1967 Rebellion “The case of Detroit confirms that redevelopment had strong negative repercussions for racial minorities, here represented by African Americans, but offers additional insight into the way racial prejudice and conflict impeded efforts to stop city decline.” June Thomas, 2013 “Northern blacks lived as second-class […]

America’s Most Consequential Racial Divide

Last October in the vice-presidential debate between Tim Kaine and Mike Pence, moderator Elaine Quijano brought up the “issue of law enforcement and race relations.” Pence’s response and the exchange that followed represents one of the most consequential racial divisions in US society: the disparate understandings of what the very concept of racism means. The exchange illustrates how our society’s guiding narratives about race preserve a woefully inadequate and overly narrow understanding of racism—as evidenced by the umbrage taken by Pence to the notion “that there’s implicit bias in everyone in the United States.”

Kneeling Down is the New Standing Up

Colin Kaepernick and the power of athlete protest In our new age of viral videos, trending topics, and social media outrage, patriotism is now hotly contested in cyberspace—what it means to be a patriot and honor the flag, the anthem, or the nation’s president. Enter former San Francisco 49er and now free agent NFL quarterback […]

When White Nationalism Became Popular

What rising white nationalism says about race in the 21st century US. On November 12th, 2016 TheDailyStormer.com, a neo-Nazi website with a monthly viewership of over two million lead with the headline, “The Swastika Reigns in Germany! Trump reigns in America!” After the election a popular thread on the white nationalist website Stormfront.org, with over […]

Notes on the Political Divide

Disentangling Antiracism from Capitalism Was it racism or class that gave Trump the election? Much has been written about this topic, including articles that deconstruct the white working-class, analyze the opportunism in whiteness, and claim racism was to blame. Yet, our attempts to understand the rise of Trumpism have not assuaged our fears of institutionalized and […]

The Unwelcomed Guest

Early in April the faculty at Indiana University had a heated email discussion about Charles Murray’s visit to our campus. The co-author of the notorious The Bell Curve, he was recently the subject of a demonstration at Middlebury College. He was not coming to IU to discuss his earlier book on human population genetics, but […]