In at least 500 words (about 1.5 pages double-spaced, 12 point font, 1 inch margins, not including your header) please answer: How does land dispossession, genocide, slavery, and institutional racism shape the racialization of Black and Native Americans/American Indians? ONLY use course material from the prior weeks.
In at least 300 words (almost a page double-spaced, 12 point font, 1 inch margins, not including your header) please answer: Reflect on how YOU’VE been racialized. What are the racial/ethnic experiences that you have encountered? They can be in education/school, at work, at home/in your community, online/on social media, etc. If you feel you have not had many “racialized experiences” or experiences where your race and ethnicity was important to an incident or occurrence, think about why the invisibility of race was normalized. (at least 1 page)
Land Dispossession, Genocide, Slavery and Institutional Racism: How They Shape Racialization
The tragic histories of land dispossession, genocide, slavery, and institutional racism have profoundly shaped the racialization of Black and Native American communities in the United States. Centuries of violence, oppression, and discrimination have cemented racial hierarchies that continue to impact people of color today.
Land Dispossession and Genocide of Native Americans
Beginning in the 15th century, European colonizers laid claim to indigenous lands across North America through warfare, broken treaties, and the doctrine of discovery (Carpenter et al., 2009). This widespread dispossession caused the deaths of millions of Native Americans from violence, disease, and starvation (Stannard, 1992). The U.S. government enacted further policies of removal, relocation and cultural assimilation that eradicated tribal homelands and identities (Deloria & Lytle, 1984). This dark history of conquest and near extermination became a defining narrative of Native American racialization as non-white “others” on their own ancestral territories (Barker, 2009).
Slavery and the Racialization of Blackness
The transatlantic slave trade forcibly transported over 12 million Africans to the Americas between the 16th-19th centuries (Eltis & Richardson, 2010). In the U.S., the institution of chattel slavery codified Black people as property and less than human (Harris, 1993). The one-drop rule classified anyone with even trace African ancestry as Black to maintain white supremacy (Davis, 1991). After emancipation, Jim Crow laws continued to legally disenfranchise and segregate Black communities through the denial of civil rights and access to social services (Alexander, 2010). This legacy of dehumanization and second-class citizenship became embedded in the social construct of Black racial identity.
Institutional and Structural Racism
Overtly racist policies may have ended, but the effects of centuries of dispossession, enslavement, and legal discrimination persist through modern structures of institutional and systemic racism. For example, the racial wealth gap can be directly linked to historical practices like the lack of access to GI Bill benefits, discrimination in housing and employment, and predatory financial practices targeting people of color (Kochhar & Cilluffo, 2018). Racial profiling and police brutality also disproportionately impact Black and Native communities as a continuation of social control (Alexander, 2010; Barker, 2009). The inequalities produced through land, labor, and social exclusion became naturalized in the racial order that still circumscribes life chances and experiences for people of color in the U.S. today.
In summary, the racialization of Black and Native American identities was a violent process inextricably tied to the theft of indigenous homelands, the commodification of Black bodies, and the legal subjugation of communities of color. Centuries of dispossession, genocide, slavery, and institutionalized racism produced deep-seated racial hierarchies that manifest in ongoing inequities, marginalization, and trauma experienced by people of color. Dismantling these structures requires acknowledging and addressing their roots in the brutal histories of white supremacy in the U.S.
Alexander, M. (2010). The new Jim Crow: Mass incarceration in the age of colorblindness. The New Press.
Barker, J. (2009). Native acts: Law, recognition, and cultural authenticity. Duke University Press. research paper writing service.
Carpenter, C., Katyal, S. K., & Riley, A. (2009). In defense of property. Yale LJ, 118, 1022.
Davis, F. J. (1991). Who is Black?: One nation’s definition. Penn State Press.
Deloria, V., & Lytle, C. M. (1984). American Indians, American justice. U of Texas Press.
Eltis, D., & Richardson, D. (2010). Atlas of the transatlantic slave trade. Yale University Press.
Harris, C. I. (1993). Whiteness as property. Harv. L. Rev., 106, 1707.
Kochhar, R., & Cilluffo, A. (2018, November 1). Income inequality in the U.S. is rising most rapidly among Asians. Pew Research Center. https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2018/07/12/income-inequality-in-the-u-s-is-rising-most-rapidly-among-asians/
Stannard, D. E. (1992). American holocaust: Columbus and the conquest of the New World. Oxford University Press.