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After Race, Too: New Alignments in Comparative Racialization, Multiracialism, and Post-Racialism

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Organizer: Lynn Itagaki

Co-Organizer: Rafael Pérez-Torres

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Given the resurgence of white supremacy in anti-(im)migrant, anti-Muslim, and anti-Black fringe and mainstream politics in the Global North, this seminar plans to identify interracial conflicts and convergences in the present critical moment. This seminar anticipates case studies and texts (literary and visual media) that span the globe throughout history. Our goal is to both identify racial hierarchies and aggregate heterogeneous approaches in forming cross-racial alliances, coalitions, and solidarities. We unevenly experience and witness daily the racist legacies of genocide, removal, exclusion, and containment wrought by imperialism, globalization, and neoliberalism.
This seminar proposes to collectively evaluate and schematize the field of comparative race studies: the tools, methods, and concepts used to compare and contrast the experiences of different racial groups. Comparative racialization rests upon the mutually constitutive concept of race in which groups are racialized in relation to one another. Comparative racialization plays an important role in terms of the management and prioritizing of racial claims on the state. Just as Whiteness cannot exist without Blackness, I contend that the best methods take into account how the racialization of these racial groups without the histories of Asian, Latinx, and Native American identity formations. The pseudo-scientific explanations of racist hierarchies depend on the stabilizing force of the comparative and contingent racialization of people.
We welcome papers that begin with interdisciplinary methodologies and theories: intersectionality in Black feminist thought and women of color feminism through Kimberlé Crenshaw, Patricia Hill Collins, Angela Davis, and bell hooks, among others; Gloria Anzaldúa’s mestiza consciousness; Grace Kyungwon Hong and Roderick Ferguson’s “strange affinities”; Jasbir Puar’s assemblage via Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari; and Rafael Pérez-Torres’s critical mestizaje are some important conceptual foundations that inspire this panel.
How do artists and writers of color attempt to address and heal deep political, economic, and social rifts, especially over issues of interracial justice and historical racism? Some potential topics might engage the possibilities and perils of anti-racist, interracial coalition-building and alliances; failures of multiculturalism, reevaluations of Whiteness studies; mixed-race studies; transracial adoption; interracial intimacies; Afro-Orientalism; creolité; métissage; Latinidad; Hemispheric American studies; oceans as methods; diasporic cultures, identities, and communities; apologies and reparations. This list is far from exhaustive, and we look forward to your contributions and questions.
This panel is part of an ongoing effort to craft an anthology on comparative racialization and interracial formations.

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