Racialization and Racism

Introduction: Whiteness, coloniality, and the Anthropocene

In his essay 'The Souls of White Folk', written generations before the International Stratigraphy Committee would begin debating the Anthropocene concept, W.E.B. Du Bois (1920: 29) made an observation which remains pertinent today as it was when he wrote it 1920. 'I am given to understand', he wrote, 'that whiteness is the ownership of the Earth forever and ever, Amen'. Although Du Bois' famous line is in reference to the imperial origins ofthe First World War, it nevertheless anticipates one of the core themes of this special issue on 'race' and the Anthropocene, that lurking just beneath the surface of the Anthropocene concept is a racialised narrative about white Earthly possession.

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Volume 38 Issue 1