James V. Fenelon

Oct 28, 2023

Indian, Black and Irish

Indigenous Nations, African Peoples, European Invasions, 1492-1790

Routledge 2023

In this interview James Fenelon discusses his new book entitled Indian, Black and Irish: Indigenous Nations, African Peoples, European Invasions, 1492-1790, recently published with Routledge (2023).

The book traces 500 years of European-American colonization and racialized dominance, expanding our common assumptions about the ways racialization was used to build capitalism and the modern world-system. Professor Fenelon draws on personal experience and the agency of understudied Native (and African) resistance leaders, to weave a story too often hidden or distorted in the annals of the academy, that remains invisible at many universities and historical societies. 

Fenelon identifies three epochs of racial constructions, colonialism, and capitalism that created the USA. Indigenous nations, the first to be racialized on a global scale, African peoples, enslaved and brought to the Americas, and European immigrants. It offers a sweeping analysis of the forces driving the invasion, occupation, and exploitation of Native America and the significance of labor in American history provided by Indigenous people, Africans, and immigrants, specifically the Irish. Indian, Black and Irish makes major contributions toward a deeper understanding of where Supremacy and Sovereignty originated from, and how our modern world has used these socio-political constructions, to build global hegemony that now threatens our very existence through wars and climate change. It will be a vital resource to those studying history, colonialism, race and racism, labor history, and indigenous peoples.

James Fenelon is Professor of Sociology and Director of the Center for Indigenous Peoples Studies at California State University, San Bernardino. He is also currently the Lang Visiting Professor for Issues of Social Change at Swarthmore College. His books include Redskins? Sports Mascots, Indian Nations and White Racism, Indigenous Peoples and Globalization (with Thomas D. Hall), and Culturicide, Resistance and Survival of the Lakota (Sioux Nation).

Indian, Black and Irish: Indigenous Nations, African Peoples, European Invasions, 1492-1790, is published with Routledge

Aidan Beatty is a lecturer in the history department at Carnegie Mellon University

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Aidan Beatty

Aidan Beatty teaches in the history department at Carnegie Mellon University.

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