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Metaracism: Explaining the Persistence of Racial Inequality

Carter A. Wilson
Metaracism: Explaining the Persistence of Racial Inequality
ISBN: 978-1-62637-189-7
2015/304 pages/LC: 2014028351
"A topical, thought-provoking book on race in the US."—Choice

"Compelling.... An impressive assemblage of historical and political analysis."—Rose Ernst, Seattle University

"A systematic, theoretically innovative, and empirically rich refutation of the idea of a postracial/postracist United States."—Robert C. Smith, San Francisco State University


The black/white gaps in income, education, and wealth are expanding. Prisons are crowded with black men. There is an increasing concentration of urban poverty. While individuals and communities reject biological determinism and find bigotry offensive, structural inequalities remain. Why? Addressing this fundamental question, Carter Wilson focuses on the elusive dynamics of contemporary racism.

Wilson documents the emergence of metaracism, a deeply embedded bias fueled by economic insecurity, entrenched (yet no longer publicly accepted) stereotypes, and shifts in public policy. He illustrates his argument with discussions of a broad range of policy issues. His provocative analysis offers new insights on both the roots of racism and its persistence today.


Carter A. Wilson is professor of political science at Northern Michigan University.


  • What Is Metaracism?
  • The Structure of Metaracism.
  • The Culture of Metaracism.
  • Politics, the State, and the Maintenance of Racial Oppression.
  • The Growth of Inequality.
  • The Assault on Social Welfare and Education Policies.
  • The Incarceration Crisis.
  • Minority Vote Suppression.
  • Racism at a Crossroads.