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White Supremacy and Racism in the Post-Civil Rights Era

Eduardo Bonilla-Silva
White Supremacy and Racism in the Post-Civil Rights Era
ISBN: 978-1-58826-032-1
2001/223 pages/LC: 2001019619

"This is a wonderful book. It engages and extends critical race theory, draws on empirical research, poses challenges for critical globalization theory, and is useful as we reexamine and debate liberalism."—Judith R. Blau, Contemporary Sociology

"This probing and critical look at ongoing racism in the U.S. should be in every library."—Choice

"This provocative and important book offers the all too rare combination of analytical seriousness and political courage.... For anyone concerned with understanding and combating racism, it is mandatory reading!"—Noel A. Cazenave

"This is an insightful look at racial politics."—Booklist

"Full of brilliant, fresh ideas and well-developed arguments"—Hernán Vera

"Provocative, innovative, and insightful. . . . No person interested in racial inequality, race relations, and the changing nature of racial discourse in the U.S. should fail to read this work."—Cedric Herring


Co-Winner of the Oliver Cromwell Cox Award of the ASA Racial and Ethnic Minorities Section!

Is a racial structure still firmly in place in the United States? White Supremacy and Racism answers that question with an unequivocal yes, describing a contemporary system that operates in a covert, subtle, institutional, and superficially nonracial fashion.

Assessing the major perspectives that social analysts have relied on to explain race and racial relations, Bonilla-Silva labels the post–civil rights ideology as color-blind racism: a system of social arrangements that maintain white privilege at all levels. His analysis of racial politics in the United States makes a compelling argument for a new civil rights movement rooted in the race-class needs of minority masses, multiracial in character—and focused on attaining substantive rather than formal equality.


Eduardo Bonilla-Silva is professor of sociology at Duke University.


  • Introduction: Why Are Racial Minorities Behind Today?
  • What is Racism? The Racialized Social System.
  • Racial Attitudes or Racial Ideology? An Alternative Paradigm for Examining Actors' Racial Views.
  • The "New Racism": The Post-Civil Rights Racial Structure in the U.S.
  • Color-Blind Racism: Toward an Analysis of White Racial Ideology.
  • Conclusion: New Racism, New Theory, and New Struggle.