As the political climate of the United States moves rightward, effective and visionary voices from the left become both rarer and more essential. In this volume, the author provides such a voice. Taking the convergence of race, gender and class as fundamental trajectories, the author offers an account of a world in which the United States functions as the political-police centre. At its core, the work is about the many ways the current structure of American government and society is inimical to human rights. The author examines the prevalence of racist violence in US politics, making connections between seemingly disparate themes and events, and linking global and US domestic politics. In the systematic nature of state violence, James sees a possibility of hope in the building of coalitions across race, class, gender and national divides. She argues that the very commonality that makes the system seem so overpowering can serve as the basis for resistance - that the elements that hold together a web of oppression and misuse of power also mark its vulnerabilities, especially when confronted with an equally systematic resistance.
The author offers solutions for the dilemmas facing progressive politics and the individuals who work to achieve social justice. This is a guidebook for those who want to understand that forces that hinder social change, and to effectively move beyond them.
Part 1 Rage and resistance lessons: political life in theory; a Foucaldian metanarrative - erasing the spectacle of (radicalized) state violence; radicalizing language and law - Genocide, discrimination and human rights. Part 2 Colonial hangovers: US policies "at home" and abroad hunting prey - the invasion of Panama; the colour(s) of Eros - Cuba as US obsession; border crossing alliances - Japanese and African American women in state households. Part 3 Cultural politics: black women and sexual violence Anita Hill/Clarence Thomas - martyr heroism and gender abstractions; symbolic rage - prosecutorial performances and radicalized sexual violence; coalition crossfire - anti-violence organizing and interracial rape cases. Part 4 Teaching, community and political activism: "discredited knowledge" in the nonfiction of Toni Morrison; teaching "gender, race and class" and the "integration" of multiculturalism; "gender, race and radicalism" - reading the autobiographies of native and African American women activists; conclusion - UN conventions, anti-racist feminism and coalition politics.