Why are Black people stopped, arrested, and shot by police at such a high rate? Why are they portrayed in the media as gangbangers and urban thugs? D. Marvin Jones writes that the problem of race lies in the way Blackness has been inextricably knotted together in our culture with presumptions. In the era of segregation this was a presumption of inferiority, but in our era, it is primarily a presumption of dangerousness or criminality.
In chapters on slavery, urban spaces, the drug war, media portrayals, and white spaces, he shows how the presumption of guilt continues to shape the treatment of Black people in the United States. Arguing that this presumption is not simply a matter of hate on the part of individuals, but instead a social process linked to a widely shared racial ideology, The Presumption points out the continuation of racial caste in the U.S. as a crisis for democracy and provides a blueprint for a kind of second Reconstruction.
- Centers on timely topics including racism, the criminal justice system, and the representation of people of color
- Written by one of the nation’s foremost scholars on civil rights issues
- Considers the role of individuals and institutions in perpetuating prejudice and discrimination