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Du Bois and the US State

by Anthony Monteiro

HE EVENTS OF SEPTEMBER 1 1 , 2 0 0 1 d i d IlOt

begin the tratisformation of the US state. They accelerated processes that had for almost three decades been taking shape, trausforniiug the US state and political system towards an authoritaiian right-witig detnocracy. In this respect, the US state, which h-oni its inception has beeti racialized, is today more racist, more imperialist and more geared to global war than ever in its history. This reconfiguration of the US state establishes the hegemony of its military industrial/national security and police/domestic control sectors, over what might be consider its New Deal, social welfare and non-military and non-domestic control sectors. The New Deal and Welfare State dimensions of the state (those dimensions associated with the radical bourgeois reforms brought about in response to the Great Depre.ssi()n of the 1930s and the Civil Rights and Black Power Movements of the 1960s) are being downsized, privatized or chminated The largest agencies of the US government are today the Defense Department and the Department of Homeland Security. To cite no less an authority than Richard Holbrooke, former Assistant Secretary of State and a former US Ambassador to the United Nations, "the American military has acquired an imprecedented role in the conduct of foreign policy"^ This is accounted for by the exigencies of the global warfare and empire building policies of the Clinton and Bush Administrations, but also by the logic inherent to neo-liberal globalist economic policies. Vast and radical attacks upon bourgeois democracy, civil liberties and

human rights are under way in the United States, allegedly justified by the need for homeland secutity. This is accompanied by a rise of poverty, unemployment, hunger, imprisonment and disease, especially among African Americans and other racially oppressed groups.
W.E.B Du Bois, Race, and the World System

N ESSENTIAL W A Y S , W.E.B. Du Bois in his major works provides necessary elements of a state theory, a theory of the world system and of crisis. Dtt Bois's work carries an overarching political meaning in the current historical context. The Souls of Black Folk, for instance, was de.signed to address the political task of the African American struggle and the Struggle for botirgeois democracy at the start of the twentieth century. Besides many of the philosophical, liistorical and sociological significances of the text, its contemporary relevance is in the manner it addresses the struggle for democracy and bourgeois liberties under conditions of racialized state power. Even in his conceptualization of bourgeois democratic reforms Du Bois superseded both progressivism and socialism. Each were blind to the centrality of race and white supremacy as core dynamics of reaction and conservatism; but more, neither saw the state in racialized terms. And while each of these reform movetneiits foresaw a crucial role for the state in bringing about reform in the political and economic systems, neither understood race as tlie critical foundation of the US state.
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Scholars sttch as David Levering Lewis :^) and Alex Schafcr (2001) that Du Bois was highly influenced by the normative and reform orientation of his profe.ssors in Berlin, in particular Clustav von Schmoller and Adolph Wagner, hoth leading figures in the school of historical economics, Du Bois was a graduate student in Germany hetween 1892 and 1894.- The German historical school of economics assumed a major role for the state in the organization of a jttst and democratic society; this in stark contrast to the laissez-faire economics of the AngloAmerican school. In defining the prohlem of the twentieth century as the color line and the struggle against it, he was anticipating hoth the civil rights and anti-colonial struggles, albeit in their botirgeois democratic dimensions. However, Dn Bois was mindful in Souls of the ruin of botirgeois democratic political and economic relationships in the US after the long period of chattel .slavery, the Civil War and the overturning of Reconstruction. And thus he viewed the onslaught against democracy as rooted in the racist overturning of Reconsti uction and the forcing of the former slaves back towards slavery. H E COURTS, he would argue, had become a universal device for the reenslavement T of blacks. The second chapter of Souls "Of the Dawn of Freedom" creates a paradigm which suggests that Reconstruction's great benefit was its demonstrating, often in limited ways, the possibility of arranging bourgeois democratic political and economic relationships upon non-racist foundations. The failure of Reconstruction, therefore, made it inevitable (a point that would be fully developed in Black Reronstruftion) tbat the problem for democracy in the twentieth century would be the problem of the color line; or more precisely the problem of race and race relationships. The irrefutable assumption of the enterprise in Souls is that the overturning of Reconstruction inaugttrated a new stage of the racialized US state and a racialized (or herrennolk) democracy. Plessy V. Ferguson (1896) enshrined these relationships as constitutional and thus protected by law. Dti Bois conceived of this problem as a global problem, which he would over the course of bis studies conceptualize as a world crisis for democracy.

A C E was both the unfinished business of the L T S nation and the ultimate test of its creed. By the time of the writing of Black Reconstruction (1935) it is apparent that, for Du Bois, nothing short of revolutionary struggle wotild bring about the realization of democracy for black folk, especially the black proletariat, A decade later in Color and Democracy: Colonies and Peace (1945) the world sys-

tem implications of the struggle for democracy arc asserted. The world system, he argvtes, is profoundly and-democratic, dictatorial and organized upon principles not that far removed from fascism.^ The while nations of Europe and America defend a world system that locks tlie majority of humatiity in a perpetual crisis state, defined by poverty, disease, little or no education and super-exploitation; which at the same time stipports luxury for the world's white minority. The political and moral agency of democracy, in the end, insists Du Bois, is not to be found in the "Western democracies" but among the colonized and oppressed throughout the world. And, finally, the crisis of the world system would be resolved through the anti-colonial struggle, economic liberation and the rearranging of the world's political and economic relations upon antiracist, anti-imperialist, socialist and democratic principles (see Black Rfconstruction, Color and Democracy: Colonies and Peace, The World and Africa, The Autobiography of W.E.B. Du Bm.v).' This process, in the long view, would constitute a fundamental change of epochs from white supremacy and colonial imperialism to global democracy.

OST .scHOLARSHii' has understood the word problem in the sentence, "The problem of the twentieth century is the problem of the color line" conventionally. The word problem has been interpreted to mean just that, a problem. I would stiggest that the word problem in the Du Boisian oeuvre means crisis. In his work "The African Roots of the War" (1915), what Du Bois is clearly addressing are the crises in the world system brought about by the intensification of discrimination along the color line and colonialism, a crisis that led to the First World War. The problem, tlierefore, of US

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and world relationships, rooted in the "problem of the twentieth century" must be understood as a crisis which leads to war, repression and fascism. At the core of the problem of race relationships are the crises these relationships produce. The color line as an explanatory category goes a considerable distance in explaining social, political, cultural, technological and other relationships and events that configure the world system. Race, the color line and race relationships arc the context of the world system. At the same time, the world system is a set of concrete mechanisms through which the color line is actuated; the color line configtires the relationships of the darker to the lighter races of humanity. Put another way, it configures the relationships of humanity to itself. Du Bois's 'The African Roots of tbe War" (1915), Black Recon.struction (1935), Color and Democracy: Colonies and Peace (1945) and The W(yrld and Africa (1947) are studies of crises in the US and world systems. The resolution of the crisis of race is central to resolving the crisis of the modern world system in Du Boisian logic. For Du Bois this requires more tban a change in the nature of economic relationships, as it were, from capitalism to socialism. That change could be the start of a deeper attack upon the color line and thus a fundamental stage in resolving the crisis of human relationships and of the world system. If not, a change of modes of production might constitute a new way to arrange the world system and thus race relationships, rather than overthrowing the regime of white supremacy. This logic insists both upon the centrality of Africa and Asia and the anti-colonial struggle in remaking the world system; and rejects an economistic explanation that privileges economic relationships in measuring fundamental change.''

tem to capitalism is its relationship to Africawhether the leaders of socialism would deal with Africa upon anti-racist and democratic principlesor seek to rearrange the world system in such ways as to benefit from the oppression and neo-colonization of Africa. Would socialism promise to its working people a lifestyle similar to that of white people in the West? Would it as a system be over-determined by efforts to resolve internal political contradictions through organizing its social relationships upon consumerist, individualist and ultimately white supremacist principles? Would the ideal be a socialism of luxury? A socialism at odds with humanity's non-white majority? In the end, the failure of European socialism is its failure to resolve the problem of white supremacy within its societies and to Join humanity's non-white majority in a consistent, indeed, revolutionary, struggle to alter the world system itself in such ways as to occasion a global redistribution of wealth based upon world democracy. This framework informs my understanding of US imperialism at the current stage and helps explain contemporary events. The New Imperialism

N THE CONTEXT OF THE COLD WAR and the global crisis created by the conflict between the capitalist and socialist systems, Du Bois argued that race and the colonization and neo-colonization of Africa and Asia are foundational to the world systems crisis. In this respect, Du Bois argues that the test of socialism as an alternative economic sysTHE BLACK SCHOLAR VOLUME 37, NO. 2

HILIP BOBBITT (2004), a defender of American imperialism, writes that George W. Busb is "the authentic voice of the liberal imperialist." An imperialist who, according to Bobbitt, is concerned with a world of prosperity, women's and minority rights, secularization and democracy. These policies, he insists, "take the doctrine of 'democratic engagement' of the first Bush administration, and the doctrine of 'democratic enlargement' ofthe Clinton administration, one step further. It might be called democratic transformation'. Or, it might be called 'liberal imperialism.'" And tben, he asks, "What is wrong with this noble idea?" This article will, in part, attempt to suggest "what is wrong with this noble idea." The current moment of empire and the new relationship of forces witbin the United States are crystallized in the Bush Administration's Doctrine of Preemptive War," the USA Patriot Act, and the Homeland Security
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Act. The Justice Department and the Homeland Security Department are designed as the command centers of the attack upon civil and political rights. International law and international in.stitutions, at the same time, are under assaulted as the Bush Administration declares its right to wage war Liuilaterally anywhere in the world. The Administration has literally declared itself outside of the bounds of international law and thus according to its own definitions, a rogue state. In economic terms, a policy shift from Keynesian state economic and financial planning to a neo-liberal Friedmanite free market, has been iustitutioualized.

supremacy that acknowledge the contingency of the individual upon the larger group. This dialectic between the white race and white supremacy on the one hand, and individualism on the other, accounts for certain of the contradictions of action aud thought among white folk. This is pardcularly pronounced as regards economic and class interests. In the priority hierarchy of most white people class and economic intere.sts are of secondary or tertiary significance in the determination of political behavior; race trumps class in defining consciousness and political behavior.

H A T HAVING B E E N SAID, modern capitalism, bourgeois democracy, globalizadon and contemporary pop culture are virtually incomprehensible without understanding the modern racialized capitalist state. Nor can the new imperialism be understood without understanding its historical anchorage in the racialized US state. While these are issues that engage state and political theory they are also matters that must be investigated historically. The social psychological and ideological dimensions are particularly importiint. It is safe to say that the American population, particularly white people, views the current moment as a new and frontier. There is a perceptible transformation of the psychological and ideological iruptdses among white Americans and something that resembles a collective traumatizatioii is occurring as the business of empire comes home to roost. The psychological and ideological moment is nourished by the concerns that ordinary white people have with their own vulnerability and their awareness that it is they who are called upon to make significant sacrifices in the name of empire. It is in this milieu that we witness the attempt of leading elements of the state to forge a national identity and sense of purpose geared to fit this new moment. Indeed, the conscious and subconscious dimensions of the American belief system are historically constituted. On the one hand they are variants of extreme individualism; but, at the same time, they embrace notions of whiteness and white

HE PSYCHOLOGICAL and ideological realities of ordinary white folk are filtered through the prisms of race, nationalism and white supremacy. The perceived threats, therefore, are viewed as threats to white people as a collecdve and not solely to the economic interests of the nation, or even to specific class interests. For them the American dreamscape has been sullied and tarnished. Their sense of security and the expectation of privacy are wounded. In tlieir minds, their dream world has to be redeemed iu order that the American psyche be restored. In the deep est sense tlie privileges of whiteness and white supremacy are perceived as being under attack. Hence, the defense of America and of democracy is at the core a defense of the global rights of white people, articulated variotisly as defenses of civilization or the West. What we have is the reassertion of the notion of civilized and uncivilized nations. Civilized nations are either Western or those whose elites adhere to or adopt Western civilizational values. Hence, the war against terrorism is to uphold Western civilization. However, once it is connected to its objective, an American global empire, it may be properly viewed as a war to universalize white supremacy and to establish the United States as its begemon. This inevitably leads to tearing up of the internaiioual legal framework established since 1945; in particular, the UN Charter and its commitments to decolonization and universally recognized human rights. This constitutes a profound emasculadon of international law and a return to the

Great Nations system of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. As is clear tliis system harkens back to the time of rampant colonization. Clusters of right-wing commentators are either calling for the US to leave the UN or to severely minimizes its participation. Others more boldly assert the need to for an alternative international organization called the League of Democracies, which would divide the v^forld between the so-called civilized nations and the less than civilized or uncivilized nations. The US State's Evolutionary History

empire fits a moment of economic crisis and the challenges to US hegemony by forces as disparate as China's industrial development, India's technological challenge and the antiauthoritarian movements in the Middle East. C^omnientators such as Chalmers Johnson (2004) are explicit in arguing that the Bush doctrine represents an effort to resolve profound problems in tlie global system. HITENESS is a dynamic and crucial factor of state formation. Traditional Marxian state theory understands state formation in tbe US as determined by class conflict. Hence, the class of slave owners, bankers, merchants and small capitalists seized state power in the American Revolution in the name of democracy and the American nation. In this construal the American Revolution was a bourgeois democratic revolution, Du Boisian hi.storiography asserts that a racialized class, made up of slaveholders, merchants, bankers, small farmers and workers (see Suppressiun of the African Slave Trade (1896), Black Reconstruction (1935) seized power and deployed il to maintain the main form of propertyslavesas the basis for nationa] economic development and white privilege. It is significant that Du Bois defines the slaves in Suppression as workers and in Black Reconstruction as a proletariat. Here rests his visionary reconceptualization of the class struggle and revolutionary agency. Indeed, it is the industrial working class or the proletariat as suggested by Marx that constitutes the revolutionary agency of modernity. However, Du Bois will initiate an act of profound theoretical displacement in Suppression and most decisively in Black Reconstruction, argtiing that the former .slaves are the racialized proletariat of America, and the principal agency of progressive and revolutionary change.

United States to move to the right in terms of foreign and domestic policies. This inexorable movement, with temporary moments of slow down in the 1930s and 1940s, and the 1960s, has reached an extremely dangerous moment. The overturning of Reconstrnction inaugurated this movement.' Race and white supremacy in the post-slavery history of the US have so shaped the nature of class and social relationships and thus of consciousness that the most significant trend among white folk is to the right and conservatism. Hence, support for most state policies of war and racism. There is yet another way to understand state policy, which is as a manifestation of a growing crisis of the global economic system. World systems theorists as varied as Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, W.E.B. Du Bois, Immanuel Wallerstien, Samir Amin and Andre (iunther Frank have argued that the world system has been in crisis since the beginning of the twentieth century. According to world systems theorists, this has produced war, economic depressions and revolution. This idea of a crisis of the global system is periodized in two ways: one, from the standpoint of economic and business cycles and secondly from tbe standpoint of large socio-political phenomena, such as wars, national liberation struggles and revolutions. However, botb types of phenomena tend to overlap in history and can be viewed as part of the multiple determinations of historical reality. Certainly, a plausible case can be made for the argument that the Bush strategy of war and


V E N IN THE E A R L Y PERIODS of American history, in relationship to the slaves the white proletariat and petty botirgeoisie constituted a nascent labor aristocracy, which defines its social being in opposition to the black proletariat. Therefore, the dominance of slaves as the main form of propert)' and the principle source for the production of
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wealth, gave a racialized definition and identity to the slaves, and to the classes that make up white people. In fact, the racialized dimension of these identities is overdetermining of other social relationships. To use Maixist language, the bourgeoisie in ihe American context (as well as in Europe, Australia, New Zealand and South Afnca) is first white. The working classes are, therefore, racially identified. All classes and strata of white people become identified as a sepiu-ate race<"lass from blacks and therefore defined the nation and the state in racialized terms." A racialized nation-state is formed; and within this mixture, the core, or organizing mechanism of race, class, nation and nationality is the racialized state. The slaves constituted in Du Bois's thinking the principal proletarian agency in nlneteenthcenttiry US history The racialized self-identification of whiLe workers and what Du Bois called "a wage for whitenes.s" bound them more strongly lo the white bourgeoisie tlian to the black proletariat.^ This wage for whiteness is, so to speak, an ontological benefit to being identified as white. Hence, an ontological identification exists between white workers and white slave owners, wbite workers and white capitalist, etc. The state, therefore, is not a mecbanism of class rule, .sui generis, it is a mecbanism of raceclass rttle. It is legally constituted not merely as an instrument of governance and rule by a class of property owners, but of tbe dominant Tbis rule is organized upon tbe ideolog\^ of white supremacy. Hence, the boundaries between tbe ruled and tbe rulers along class lines are blurred and fluid, wbile the real and most enduring boundaries arc between tbe racially dominant and racially subordinated groups. Furtbermore, as Du Bois suggests, from tbe racially oppressed emerges //? proletariat and within it resides the vast reservoir of proletarian consciotisness and agency (see Black Reconstruction, chapter 4 'Tbe General Strike"). T b e "class struggle" in tbis Du Boisian construal is organized around tbe -Struggle against white supremacy and its central organizing principal is tbe struggle for black freedom. Tbe racialized state functions as tbe insLiument of wbite tmit)' and wbite ideological identity against tbe threat ofthe black race-class and its proletariat core.
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state as a racialized instrument does not negate tbe Marxist theory of tbe state. His tlieory advances Marxism, realizing a new tbeoreticai s\Tithesis wbicb is botb tbeoredcaliy and empirically more accurate. Tbe Du Boisian consuual is both dieoretically elegant and bigbly predictive. Whicb is to say it fits tbe actual history of tbe US and is able to not merely describe the history of tbe racialized state, but anticipate its trajectories. Furthermore, it breaks out of the redtictionist strategies of class essentialism and methodological individualists. It is the least dogmatic of the major theories of tbe state. This Du Boisian stiindpoint informs a growing body of scholarship. A significant reexamination of stale tbeory and its legal implication is occurring. Some of this is associated witb tbe scbool of scbolarsbip called critical race theory and tbinkers sucb as Derrick Bell, Patricia Williams, Cheryl Harris, Kimberle Crensbaw and Cbarles Mills. Along side tbis scbool is tbe school identified as wbiteness studies, wbose proponents are David Roediger, Noel Ignatiev, T h e o d o r e Allen and J o e Feagin a m o n g others. Tbinkers like B e r n a r d Magubane and Clarence J. Munford bave tbotigbt deeply about tbe state using traditional Marxism as a starting point, but going beyond it in a Du Boisian manner. Tbeir line of researcb and reasoning represents tbe most fruitful to understanding tbe racialized state. Cbarles Mills argues tbat tbe US state is formed out of a racial contract between wbite folk. Tbe state is an a priori condition of modern racialized societies. Bernard Magubane sbows a similar process witb respect to Soutb African state formation. Magubane's studies examines a wbite settler colony and the modalities of state formation tbat emerged from tbe confiicts and cooperation between Englisb and Dutcb settlers to control tbe African majority of Soutb Africa.

HE HISTORICAL ACCOUNT of the US State empbasizes tbat it was formed and legitimated by wbite people based upon a protracted bistory of compromise, conflict, civil war and armed struggle among tbemselves, accompanied by a long, brutal bistory of betrayal by wbite working and middle class

people of black slaves, workers, sharecroppers and middle classes. The betrayal of the Negro, to use Rayford Logan's phrase, is critical in every moment of state formation and legitimization in American history. Noel Ignatiev's sttidy How The Irish Became White and David Roediger's The. Wages of Whiteness are recent explanation of the consequences of the white working class's betrayal and its role in the legitimization of whiteness. Ignatiev says, "In the combinadon of Southern planters and the 'plain republicans' of the North the Irish were to become a key element. The truth is not, as some historians would have it, that slavery made it possible to extend to tbe Irish the privileges of citizenship, by providing another group for them to stand on, but the reverse, that the assimiladon of the Irish into the white race made it possible to maintain slavery" (1995:69). A R Y FRANCES BERRY (1994) takes tbe story further, urging that the US state and Constitution were forged in the struggle to contain black resistance. The logic of Berry's position is that whiteness and the racialized state function to suppress black resistance and maintain blacks as a "sub-proletariat." Leronne Bennett, Jr. in his work Forced Into Glory: Abraham Lincoln's White Dream (2000) argues that through it all Lincoln was unprincipled regarding the freedom of the slaves and had he lived beyond 1864 would have, like Jefferson, slaughtered the ideals of the nation upon the alter of white supremacy. Lincoln, in Bennett's narrative, was another of a long line of white betrayers of blacks. What is missing in Bennett's account is that Lincoln as President was first and foremost a defender of the racialized state, and his behavior was both constrained and facilitated by tbat state. Berry's account is as close as one gets in the confines of academic discourse to arguing that the US state is a racist state. Finally, the crucial moment in defining white rights and black denial and hence updating the US Constitution to reflect the new stage of US racial and economic life was the famous Plessy v. Ferguson Aecmon of 1896. Interpreting that case, Cheryl Harris (1993) insists that race and property rights define

the foundation of US Constitutional law and that whiteness is essentially a form of property to protected under the Constitution. Legal Evolutions of Whiteness The legal evolution of whiteness begins with the three-fifths clause of the Constitution and is perfected through multiple political and Constitutional interpretations and rulings. Among these are the Dred Scott Decision (1857), Plessy v. Ferguson (1896) and most notably the recent interpretations of the US Supreme Court holding that the equal protection clause of the fourteenth Amendment applies equally to white men as to blacks. Native Americans and other peoples of color. White (or American) nationalism is, in this configuration, the political manifestation of whiteness. The racialized US state is the central political organ of white power. It is, however, a complex network of relationships and socio-political forces. It is a site of intense political and ideological conflict. It is neither sui generis, nor above the political and economic realities of the historical, socio-political and ideological contexts within which it exists. Thus it is possible to observe the command and control functions of tbe US state as well as its mediation functions. Whereas liberal theorists generallv point to the mediation or "above class" functions of the state (see John Rawls, Theory of Justice and Robert Nozick, Anarchy, Slate and Utopia), Marxists and other radical theorists point to the command and control ftmctions as primary to the definition of a stale.

T IS C L E A R that both radical and liberal commentators on the US state can make a case that from the standpoint of theory the US state is both liberal (in tbe sense of above class) and class-based. However, the deeper issue is how the state functions to configure, defend and promote race and race relations at particular historic moments. In this respect neither the liberal nor traditional radical views are adequate. Wliat is called for is an understanding of the US state as a racialized mechanism that is the principal organizer of racialized power. As an instrtiment of racialized power, i.e., the power of
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white people over non-whites, especially black people, it functions to mediate class conflict and fissures among whites and to exert, more than not, command and control functions with respect to blacks. This situation is not only deeply contradictory, but also profoundly ironical. Blacks, the spearhead of most of the important democratic reforms in US history, have benefited least from democracy. Remaining outside of the social contract, excluded from the liberal framework constructed and defended by the state and the chief objects ofthe state's command and control functions, they appear almost as a stateless people, somewhat like the Palestinians or black South Africans under apartheid. The racialized dimension of the US state, dialectically, compels its class dimension to be contingent, indeterminate and fluid. The very fluid and dynamic nature of race and whiteness, their changing modes of political and social identities, predetermine certain indeterminacy with respect to the formations and development of the racialized state. Hence, rather than being a stable entity the racialized state is dynamic, somewhat tmstable and an ever evolving structure.

suggested that black folk seen as strategic actors could alter the political landscape and in so doing maniptiiate time, i.e. the rhythms and sequences of events. (For Dn Bcjis on this aspect see Lemmert [2001]. Kontopolous (1993:236) speaks of this situation as heterarchy wherein structures stich as the state are determined in and through contingencies and indeterminacies. Hence the logic of racialized state formation rather than top down and hierarchical is heterarchical, meaning top down and bottom up at the same time.'"

t.MOGRAPHic CHANGES in the US population, resulting from immigration and low birth rates among whites, force the need to redefine whiteness in such ways as to guarantee a white majority as a condition of legitimization of white authority. Non-black immigrants are faced with complex negotiations between anti-black racism and whiteness. Many Latinos and Asians are so positioned to become in a generation white, or at least Iionorary, or near-whites. Heterarchical, or mtiltileveled logics of social structural formation, are what we see evidenced in the formation of the racialized state in the hlstoriatl .setting of the US. Hence, the prcKesses that unfold are far more complex than the hierarchical top down logics usually identified with state formation logics in Marxist and left discotirse. Du Bois in Black Recomtrudion identified this heterarchical logic and suggested that tlie strategy for the achievement of botirgeois democratic rights by black folk would require muliiplc tactics that took into account tlie fltiid heterajchical nature of tlie state. Du Bois even
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HIS IS THE SITUATION within which the dynamics of state formation occur at the present, post September 11, 2001 moment; a moment of political fluidity, war, militarism and economic transformation and uncertainty; However, the theoretical defenders of the liberal state and its potential to stand apart and mediate race and class conflict are also defenders of the notion of a colorblind state and thus are themselves blind to the historically constituted racially determined nature of the US state. It is they, in the end, not the US state, who are colorblind. This colorblindness itself, as Charles Mills points out, entrenches white privilege." In being blind to the racial nature of the state they fail to see the profound command and control ftmctions of the state, which are overwhelmingly constructed upon and defmed by the US state's role as the defender of racialized social relationships. The liberal democratic framework should have a sign outside of its door that reads, "For Whites Only." Bernard Magtibane (1996) sbows that the racialized state in South African was constructed on the basis of a race-class dialectic. The pure class analysis, he points out, cannot explain the racial factor in its formation. However, like the US state, it was profoundly malleable and entangled in a set of contexts that changed over historical time. Du Bois's
Blark Rf!construction is best imderstood as a

study of the construction, deconstruction and reformation of the racialized state in order to reestablish white power over the former slaves, the work force in general and the nation. Du Bois shows this was a necessary condition for the establishment of state monopoly capitalism and US imperialism. In

iiis book. Race and Civilization: Rebirth of Black

Centrality, Clarence J. Munford (2001) traces tbe ideological roots of tbe racialized state to Europe and European ideolog). He asserts tbat the Euro-American state is tbe principal agency of wbite civilizational power in the modern world. As stich, it is connected to more tban class power, but to the more endtiring cultural and civilizational patterns thai are based on wbite stipremacy. I SIDES HISTORICAL, sociological and philosophical studies of tbe racialized state and state theory, the nature of mass polidcal mobilization to legitimate tbe state confirms its racialized nature. Clearly tbe legitimization of the American state rests upon a broad wbite consensus and the mobilization of tbat consensus by tbe principal institutions of white power, including tbe main political partiesthe Democratic and Republican partiestbe media, religious institutions, labor organizations, rigbt-wing organizations, even liberal organizations and women's organizations, to name but a few. N FACT, tbe racialized state achieves legitimacy to tbe degree tbat it resolves tbe class, etbnic and gender problems and contradictions among wbite people. In otber words, tbe state meditates tbese socio-economic, etbnic, gender and politico-ideological fissures in ways that races trump tbese fisstires in tbe politics of the nation. In tbis regard, I define tbe mediation of class issues to mean not only economic class issues, but above all ideological class issues. Tbus Du Bois's idea of a wage for wbiteness, a nonmaterial or ontological wage, is crucial to understanding tbe legitimization of the state. Seymour Lipset writes, "A system in wbicb tbe support of different parties corre.sponds too closely to basic sociological divisions cannot continue on a democratic basis, for sucb a development would reflect a state of conflict among groups so intense and clear cut as to rule out all possibility of compromise (1959:93)." When Lipset in tbis cla.ssic statement references sociological differences be is referring to economic and ideological differences among wbite people. In the twoparty system botb parties are multi-class (and

in a certain way mtiltiparty, consisting of coalitions of parties based on sectionalism, economic interests, programs and class constituencies) structures tbat compete to acbieve tbe upper hand in determining the modalities by whicb wbite privilege is dispensed and defended. Tbey cooperate to legitimize a wbite consensus. Once class is no longer an i.ssue and working-class seizure of state power is resolved, and wben tbe state is legitimized tbrougb democratic and electoral processes, tbe question is wbat tben defines tbe state and wbom does it operate for and against.'- The two sources of tbe state's legitimization are, first, the fear (real and imagined) of domestic unrest sparked by blacks and the global threat eitber from international communism in tbe past, or anti-imperialist and anti-globalization movements and militant Islam in tbe present. And second, tbat tbe subde yet open message of tbe elite representatives of the racialized state is tbat it defends white privilege and wbiteness against tbese domestic and foreign tbreats.'"* Du Bois and Bourgeois Democracy: A History of the United States u BOIS STATES in Black Reconstruction, "The record of tbe Negro worker during Reconstruction presents an opportunity to study inductively tbe Marxian tbeory of tbe state (1992:381)." Charles Lemmert (2000:222) is rigbt when he insists tbat Black Reconstruction "thinks race tbrougb in more enduringly substantial ways" tban The Souls of Black Folk. It is, moreover, global in its scope and its intellectual and ideological implications. In thinking about Reconstruction, Du Bois was also thinking about tbe present and future of race, democracy, class conflict and tbe state. In Black Reconstruction be goes beyond tbemes tbat bad appeared in his John Brown (1909): instirrectionary violence, the political and ideological agency of tbe slaves and state power. In Black Reconstruction Du Bois openly discusses tbe possibility of tbe dictatorsbip of tbe proletariat in several states of tbe former Confederacy, counterrevolutionary violence, tbe race-class dynamic and racialized democracy. He also looks at
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what we today would call racialized relationships of production. At the core of this set of production relationships is what he called "a wage for whiteness." It is a work of theory and empirical research. Its point is to talk about the future. The paradigm it presents is revolutionary and tiansgressive. It establishes a framework for a larger revolutionary research project concerning US democracy, the racialized stiite and the relationship of class and class conflict to race and race conOict. It carries enormous predictive power. Wliich is to say, its categories of analysis provide a way to explain and indeed predict the modalities and regulatory principles of institutions, social structtires and s<5cial classes aud groups that make up American society. t ' At last, BUick I^'constniction is successfiil as an act of ideological and theoretical displacement. It displaces liberal, social democratic and Marxist analysis of the state and democracy. In their place he proposes that race and racialized relationships of production are the organizing principles of American society. .\nd that cla-ss taken outside of diis historically constituted framework is theoretically impoverished. It is rare that so amhitiotis a project is so successful in realizing its intended goals, as is Black Reconstruction. .u.K RECONSTRUCTION asserts that the twentieth century is a long century that begins with the overturn of Reconstruction; that out of this defeat comes the modern US state, modern class and race relations and so on. But more than this the book sums up the seventy-five-year historical period from 1860 to 1935, and on this basis establishes the ideological, philosophical and political framework for the struggles for civil rights and bourgeois democracy through the middle to end of the twentieth and into the twent\'-first century. The work insists tipon the ccntrality of African Americans as the principal agency of progressive and revolutionary change. ,\nd points to the conservative and at times reactionary impulses that animate white working people's Du Bois is the first to establish whiteness as a social category and as such a critical core dynamic in the American social structure. In the end Du Bois redefines what class
Page 44

analysis is. He takes it beyond class reductionism and dogmatism to recognition of the embeddedness of class in race and that classes in the US context are racialized. For black people, the class conflict and bourgeois democracy are shaped in the context of the struggle against white supremacy and for freedom. Black freedom and democracy. Black Reconstruction argues, is the beginning and end of class analysis.

T THE UNIVERSITY OE BERLIN DU Bois had done considerable study in the methods of political economy. The German social science academy distinguished itself in that it sought to join historical and political economic studies with concrete empirical research. Du Bois's research while in Berlin reflected this, especially his study of the small and large-scale agricultural producdon in the American South during slavery." This line of research unfolded throughout his career, eventuating in his notion of a racialized system of production. Political economy as understood at the end of the nineteenth century meant exacdy that, the joining of economic analysis to an analws of the state and economic and social policies. From a reformist, indeed Fichtean and Fabian standpoints, this meant tising the state as an instrument of advanced and progressive consciousness and policies.''' Hence, socialists imbued the state with programs and policies that reflected their scientific findings and progressive ideas, geared to improve the conditions of working people. There is no doubt that Du Bois throughout his career saw this as one way to advance the immediate and practical interests of the racially oppressed black people. A cleai conclusion of his 1896 work, 'The Suppression of tlie African Slave Trade to the United States of America 1638-1870," pertains to the failure of the state to enforce the 1808 treaty otitlawing the international slave trade. The practical lesson that he drew from this sttidy wa.s that the state has the power to move events in one or another direction, either towards the moral good or its opposite. Hence, it is clear that Dtt Bois as a young Ph.D. believed that knowledge linked to state power could alter race relationships. This represented his early commitment to positivism and a scientistic sensibility. Tbis

stance perhaps reflected practical necessity given that blacks were almost completely powerless and disenfranchised and living under what was virtually a fascist dictatorship in the southern states.

the period of the Nadir, when blacks had been completely deprived of civil and h u m a n rights. T h e justification for this denial was that blacks were less than human, without history, and had no standing as equal citizens within society. As a political text Dti Bois's 1897 speech before the American Negro Academy "The Conservation of Races" is a defense of the rights of citizenship for blacks based on their being part of human history and civilization. Likewise, the political and ideological meaning of The Souls of Black Folk shotild be read as a passionate defense of the civil and human rights of black folk within the context of bourgeois democracy. The argument made in SouLs and "The Conservation of Races" is that blacks had made fundamental contributions to US culture and the shaping of its democracy, were in fact at once the most consistent democratic force in the nation, but ironically were themselves w i t h o u t full legal a n d human rights. He insists this was attested to by their collective strivings; making black folk the best defenders of the spirit of the Declaration of Independence. Du Bois argues that the current situation of blacks was occasioned by the overturn of Reconstruction and the return, as he says, of blacks back toward a new form of slavery. The courts, he points out, had become the universal device for the reenslavement of blacks. Du Bois's intellectual work is overarchingly political and confronts him not just with the color line, but the racialization of society's hegemonic political and social institution, the state.


BOIS UNDERSTOOD that the modern US state was both liberal and racialized, which meant that he had observed the contradiction between expanding democratic rights for whites and the equally significant fact that the state operated as an instrument of racial subordinaiion. This feature could be

found in European states as well. The difference was that European powers primarily exercised the racialized dimension of state power in their colonies and in wars of national conquest and suppression (see Du Bois's "African Roots of the War"). The uniqueness of the American situation is that both features were exercised within the national boundaries of the US nation-state. The liberal view is that tlie state constitutes a netitral player standing apart from, or above race and class, as tbe legal arbiter of societal relationships. The proto-fascist, authoritarian view is that the state is an open instrument ofthe interest of a race-class in its struggle for liberty, national consolidation and progress. These views coexist and are mutually supportive. The liberal view is almost solely associated with social contract theory and with the liberal view of the state advanced by John Rawis (1971)."^ The proto-fascist or authoritarian view is as American as Jefferson, Andrew Jackson and Lincoln."'' Moreover, while present throughout Du Bois's early works, including T/w Stnils of Black Folk, is a clear predisposition to support the insurrectionary path to changing the racialized American state; this aspect becomes more pronounced in his writing after 1920, reaching its peak in Black Reconstruction. His view wotild supersede several extant socialist and communist constructions. On the one hand, his view would supersede the Fabian idea that the state plays a technical function and organizes tlie intellectual resources of society for the purpose of advancing the technical and social relationships of society."* It would also go beyond the classical Marxist-Leninist position, that the state is die concentrated expression of the repressive power of the dominant class. In superseding these views Du Bois would insist that the Western state was racialized and thus constituted the concentrated power of the white race and hence defended existing race relationships within their national boundaries and internationally through colonialism and imperialism.

HERE EMERGES from the analytic dimension of his work the paramotint role of African American political and moral agency in the context of the American republic. The
Page 45


slave rebellions and insurrections, tbe role of tbe Haitian Revolution and its leader, Toussaint L'Ouverture contributed to Du Bois's conclusion tbat tbe role of tbe wbite masses in tbe bistory of resistance to repression was exaggerated by historians and bad not measured up to tbe maroon and slave re.sistance. Du Bois's startling view tbat tbe slaves refusal to work after 1862 constituted a general strike represented a revolutionary approacb to American bistory writing. From tbis the sense tbat the crisis of slavery from 1860 to 1880 constituted a revolutionaiy situation and diat black folk were the principal agents of revolutionary change lead logically to tbe bypotbesis tbat in several soutbern states a "dictatorsbip of tbe proletariat" to use bis language, could have possibly emerged. It is as important to examine bow tbese ideas worked tbemselves out in strategy, tactics, organization and politics. Tbe bulk of bis work addressing tbe pressing need for blacks to achieve bourgeois democratic rigbts and liberties as a part of the struggle for full liberation, would require practical day-to-day organization, education and agitation. Du Bois's organizational work speaks above all else to bis attempt to implement bis ideas. In every stage of bis career be was in some organization, or organizing and edititig some political or scbolarly journal. However, it is apparent tbat be fully understood tbat tbe path of bourgeois democracy for blacks would not proceed as it bad in Etirope or for tbat matter as it had for wbites in tbe United States. It would be, in tbe end, a struggle for bourgeois democratic rigbts witliout tlie leadersbip of an existing or aspiring bourgeoisie. It would be as be concepttialized it in Souls a struggle for tbese rigbts by a people. The texture of tbis struggle was similar to wbat became tbe national liberation struggles ofthe mid twentietb century. At tbe start of tbe twentietb century tatber tban a revolutionary path to acbieve tbese rigbts tbe reform patb was tbe only available option available to blacks.'"' The Contemporary American State

coda and tbe inauguration of tbe modern state system in tbe US. Tbe Soutb is back in tbe Union and blacks are being pitshed back into a new form of slavery. Tbe US is again a continental nation. America's victory in tbe Spanish .American War is the nodal point in tbe political and ideological consolidation of the US state as racialized and imperialist; seeking global reacb. Tbeodore Roosevelt's presidency (1901-1909) and with it tbe style of tbe strong man executive wbo is at once a man of action, vigor, and an intellectual defined tbe political and personal characteristics associated witb contemporary American executive leadersbip. Tbe presidency from Tbeodore Roosevelt's time until now has usurped Congressional power, usually justifying tbis by a reference to one or anotber crisis that d e m a n d e d centralized state leadersbip. By tbis time tbe L'S was second only to England as an industrial nation and sea power. Tbe two-party system became tbe institutional framework tbroitgb wbicb ideological and psycbological mobilization of tbe masses occurred. Appeals to wbiteness. Manifest Destin)^'^ and scientific racism"' were fasbioned to give a progressivist cover to tbis mobilization. (See Audrey Smedley, Race in North America: OrigiTu and Evolution of a Worldineio [191] and Tukufu Zuberi, Thicker Than Blood: How Racial Statistics Lie, [cbapter 1]) Tbe centrality of tbis period in defining tbe twentietb-century US nation-state is being examined by any number of establisbment bistorians. Warren Zimmerman's First Great Triumph: How Americans Made Their Country a Great Power tells a tale of tbe men who cbanged US state policy and ideology in sucb ways as to prepare it to asstime a role on tbe global stage. I detect a direct lineage to tbe unilateralist policies and present war of tbe current Btisb Administration from tbat period and tbe presidency of Tbeodore Roosevelt

HE ORIGINS of tbe m o d e r n American state can be traced roughly to tbe end of Reconstruction. Tbe Hayes-Tilden Compromise of 1877 can be tbougbt of botb as a

ITH THE PRESIDENCY of Franklin Delano Roosevelt and tbe New Deal, tbe state as tbe guarantor of tbe economy's bealtb and as tbe principle regulator of social and economic processes was establisbed. Keynesianism became tbe policy and philosopbical framework for tbis new state interventionism. At tbe

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same time Congress's power became profoundly diminished. The Cold War occasioned a renewal of the political and ideological rationale for the US state as the instrument of US imperialism and the global reach of its power. The nineteenth-century doctrine of Manifest Destiny, and the trope that white Americans were a chosen people, became a global doctrine in the struggle against "communism" This was best enunciated in the Truman Doctrine, which informs each stage of the American struggle against "the threat of communism." The scope of Manifest Desdny included the vast majority of the world's peoples in Africa, Asia and Ladn America. The Social Darwinist aspects of this doctrine were clear to any who would dare to look. Twentieth-century post World War II Manifest Destiny targeted Africa as tlie principal site of the Cold War conflict.

Empire, War and the Social Science N THE F A C E OE THE CRISIS in the World system and the war and empire strategy of the Clinton and Bush Administrations, the social .sciences are in crisis; a crisis which most professional social scientists seem to have no awareness of. American social science has been fashioned by the exigencies of the Cold War. As a consequence, American .social sciendsts have tended to conservatism and forms of professionalism which selfdeflne them away from political and ideological engagement with the state. This approach has served the overall needs of white supremacy and colonialism. The question is which side of the struggle for global democracy the social sciences will stand. Franz Fanon (1967), Michel Foucault 1972), Edward Said (1978), V.Y. Mudimbe (1988), and Lewis Gordon (1995) have drawn attention to the crisis. Fanon, for example, demonstrated that the European social and philosophical sciences evidence not the superiority of European man, btu the crisis of European man. He pulled the mask off the claims to reason and objectivity of European science. They were, he tells us, mere manifestations of the colonial and racist predisposidons of European thought. Foticault's contribution to understanding, if not resolving the crisis, was to place the social scientist as subject/agent at the center of interrogadon. In so doing the field, or discursive space, hecomes a legitimate area of investigation, and not above the fray. By establishing knowledge as contingent, conditioned and underdetermined, he focuses upon the agents of knowledge production and their discursive praxis and the ways discursive formations come about. Foucault believes that European social thought is in crisis; unlike Fanon he believes the crisis is resolvable on European terms through epistemic rupture. Eanon allows that only through revoltitiouary rupture based upon the revolutionary agency of the colonized masses will the crisis be resolved. Said and Mudimbe show the antiAsian and and-African moorings of European thought. Said interrogated the claims to objectivity of European knowledge especially about the "Oriental" Other; showing the
Page 47

H E CURRENT PHASE of the formation of the US state begins roughly with the Reagan Administration. The balance between tbe Welfare and Warfare aspects of the US state, which had been maintained between 1945 and 1980, was upset in favor of the military-industrial side. One could speak of the period up to the first Reagan Administration as one where the policy and philosophical line on the state's role in the economy as a Keynesian-neo-classical synthesis wherein the state serves the free market system and at the same time maintains the balance between classes and social strata within the white population."'^ It was, therefore, a barrier to class conflict among whites, while holding to its racialized. repressive and control dimension vii-d-vis blacks. Thus, the twenty-three year period of shifting the balance of state power increasingly to the military industrial and police dimensions of the state has been completed. The process leading to this moment has been uninterrupted. Both parties supported it, albeit, with differing rhetoric, programs and tactics for achieving it. As .such the competition dimension of the two-party system was lessened and the differences are today so slight as to be inconsequential. Milton Friedmanite neo-liberal economics prevail. Keynesianism as policy is either severely compromised or dead.

imagined space that frames European knowledge, in which the Other is imagined tojustity European hegemony and colonialism. European knowledge is .self-referential and egotistic, and operates in a circular and insular manner to justify European hegemony and colonial ism.

ti BoLS was a committed social scientist. He was deeply invested in the project of scientifically explaining human relationships, particularly race relationships. His bold and cutting edge approach to the human sciences displaced the old eugenics and Social Darwinist approaches and anticipated a good part of whal is contemporary human science. In Color and Democracy: Colonies and Peace (1945) he observed that the ofthe US to the hegemonic economic and military power in the world did not occasion a democratic efflorescence. In fact it occasioned the opposite. The situation of the US as the main threat to peace and democracy compelled Du Bois to look anew at his political direction, but also to reconsider the ideological, political and epistemological foundations of the human sciences. He thus fotuid himself in a situation of epistemic rupture in relationship to the social sciences. In their majority American social scientists were moving to the right and retreating into new forms of positivism and he was moving to the left and searching for new modes to critically investigate the epistemologies, methods and politics of the socials sciences. At the core of his renewed investment in social research was that uppermost must be the transformation of world economic and political relationships. For the human sciences to be truly human they must be global, tbey must be rooted in actual history and begin with the anti-colonial liberation struggles. At this stage in his life Du Bois had superseded the Fabian orientation of his early career. He now tmderstood the strategic necessity of the seizure of the state by the oppressed. Since the racialized state functioned to uphold white supremacy and colonialism on a global scale, in dialectical fashion he grasped that the power of the oppressed wotild have to be actualized in .state power.
Page 48

To answer the question what is to be done, a study and extension of Du Bois's understanding of the racialized state is paramount. The situation of anti-democratic and white supremacist assault upon the people's rights is in a very profound sense the outcome of America's racial history. To defend bourgeois democracy demands eitber radical reforms of the existing state system or its complete overthrow. Du Bois at various moments in his career argued botli positions and suggested tactics, strategies and organizational modalities to achieve each.'^
. \ .

1. In Foreign Affairs {November/December 2002:149) Richard Holbrooke, in examining a body of new revisionist scholarship wiites: Max Boot, for example, has shown recently in Thr
Savage Wars of Pen re thai, contrary to the Powell Docirine" and the views of the nirreni leaders of the American military, the United States has condueted endless small military inlervenlion.s with success throughout its history. Walter Russell Mead, in fipedal Providence, has idendlied ibur differeni themes in Ameriran foreign polic}' and found continuity stretchiii)^ back to the founding of the republic. looking at events thai siraddle the Cold War bui fi'oni a wholly post-C()ld War perspective, Samaiiiha Power has offered up '.4 Pro/ilttn Jriim Hell,'her wholly original examination ol eonsisteni American failure to act in the faee of genocide. And Eliol Cohen's Supreme Command is a somewhat different .sort of book: a study of four historical events designed to prove the indisputable thesis that war is siill too important to leave to the generals.

What Holbrooke suggests about this scholarship is that America has been a warfare state since the l>egimung <if tlie twentJetli century. Ziminernian (2002) concurs and persuasively argues that the US entered upon a palh of imperialism and global conquest as policy from ihe start of the twentieth century. 2. Of Du Bois's time in Germany and hi.s professors Gustav SchmoUer, Adolf Wagner and Heinrich von Treilschke he says {1940/19H6: 588) "I began lo see ihe race problem in America, the problem of the peoples of Africa and Asia, and ihe political development of Europe as one." Barkin (Fall 2000:86) argues thai Du Bois's attraction lo von Treiischke, the ultranationalist and racist, is explained by von Treitschke's recognition thai lynching showed that blacks remained outside the law. which pointed to the feebleness of American law, institutions and democracy.
?>. In Color and Democracy: Colonies and Peace, Du Bois

insists, "...Tbe mounting pressure of popular demand for democratic methods must be counted on throughout the world as popular intelligence rises. Its greatest successful opponent today is not THE BLACK SCHOLAR VOLUME 37, NO. 2

Fascism, whose extravagance has brought it.s own overtbrow. but rather imperial colonialism, where the disfranchisement of tbe mass of people has reduced millions to tyrannical control witbout any vestige of democracy (1945:84)." In The World and Africa, speaking ni ihe global economy based upon capitalism and colonialism, Du Bois says tbat the global economy is a .'iocial process and "if not socially controlled sinks to anarchy witb every possible crime of irresponsible greed. Such was the African slave trade, and such is tbe capitalistic system it brought to full flower." He goes on, "A process of incredible ingenuity for supplying human wants became in its realization A series of brutal crimes." He then insists that if capitalism can reform iLself "by means other than Communism... Communism need not be feared." However, "if a world of ultimate democracy, reaching across the color line and abolishing race discrimination, can be accomplished by the metbod laid down by Kail Marx, then that metbod deserves to be triumphant no matter what we [biiilc or do (1947:258)." 4. David Levering Lewis, W.E.B. Du Bois: The Fighl for
Equality and the ATtterican Century (2000: 496-5.5.S)

"Vice President Speaks at VFW lOS"" National Convention" (http:// www. news/ release/2002/). Here we have laid out the policy of global military domination and the strategy for enduring war and preemptive warfare. 7. It should be noted tbat American history lacks a Jacobin or revolutionary democratic tradition, excepi among .\frican .\mericans. In general, progressivism in the American setting has meant, in the main, progressivism for whites. This has been seen in the trade union, women's rights and radical movements among whites. 8. Slaves were the principal form of property in tlie period of the early accumulation of capital in the Unites States. The slaves occupy a peculiar, almost paradoxical, space in the political economy of world capitalism. The slaves are a proletariat who as human beings are the property of their "employers." This against the classic European situation where the employer owns the labor power of the worker, not the worker him/herself. This slave condition and capitalist production based on slave labor produced a situation of super exploitation. 9. David Roediger (1991:12) correctly interprets the meaning of Du Bois's Black Reconstruction, pointing out that the book is organized around issues of race and class, and that in teasing out these issues Du Bois "continually creates jarring, provocative theoretical images." Roediger points out tbat at the center of the problem of the class struggle in ihc US is the problem of whiteness, or a wage for whiteness; as Du Bois calls it, "a public and psychological wage." Charles Lemmert (2000) insists that Du Bois in writing the history of Reconstruction was actually writing the history of tbe present and future. The point is that Black liecomtrurticin and Du Bois's theory of the class struggle and class formation speaks as much to the twenty-first as to the nineteenth century. 10. On strategic actors and the manipulation of time see
Pierre Bourdieu, Outline of a Theory oj Practice (Cam-

chastises Du Bois for moving to the "far left" in his later years. Gerald Horne (1986:289), contrary to Lewis, argues. 'Tbe trip from the NAACP in 1944 to the Comnninist Party in 1961 was not as convoluted as some might suspect; their immediate goals were closely congruent...The black community was probably the most left sector of the United States polity, and Du Bois was a leader of both Blacks and the left." In The Autobiography Du Bois declares, "1 have studied socialism and communism long and carefully in lands where they are practiced and in conversation with their adherenis. and with wide reading. I now state my conclusion fiankly and clearly: 1 believe in communism. I mean by communism a planned way of life in tbe production of wealth and work designed for building a state whose object is the highest welfare of its people and not merely the profit of a part" (57). This is a logical progression of his theory ofthe color line, capitalism and the state and that to alter world economic and poliucal relationsbip.s the world system, especially its capitalist part, would have to be radically transformed. 5. Franz Fanon (1967) makes a similar point. His criliqtie of European socialism is precisely at the point that it retreats from an all-out attack upon the color line and white supremacy. He conchides. therefore, that the revolutionary initiative in world terms has shifted to the 'Third World" and the anti-colonial struggles. At one point Fanon insisis thai the socialism imagined by the representatives of the Western working class is of a socialism of luxury, which would make imperative some form of neocolonialism. 6. See 'The National Sec-urity Strategy of the United States of America" ( I^marks by the President at 2(K)2 Clraduation Exercise of the United States Military Acadetny" (littp://

bridge: Cambridge University Press, 1977). Kontopolous (1993:236) helps us conceptualize heterarchies. He says, 'The combinaiion of the dimensions of constraining, enabling and availing makes it possible to see each level, at least in reference lo the top down aspect of interlevel relations as semi-independent and yet interdependent witb others. And as it mtist be clear by now, we can extend this notion of availing to all level connections, thus positing considerable 'degrees of indeterminacy' or 'degrees of creative discretion' evidence [a] in the rise and differential strengthening of corporate and collective actors and forms of structures initiated by them at the qtiasi-global level; [b] in the formation of a variety of conjunctions and novel institutional forms, technicjues of domination, technologies of invention and monopfjlization, and various forms of bio-power developed within them; and [c] in the emergence, within these novel settings, of a number of improvised or unauthorized strategies and practices, articulated and used by virtuosic strategic agents."


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11. Charles Mills (1997:77) writes, "The black philosopher Bill I.awson comments on the deficiencies of the cmicfpumi apparalus of tratlitioiial liberalism, which has no room for the peculiar post-Emancipation status of blacks, simultaneously citizens and non-citizens. The black philosopher of law Anita Allen remarks on the irony nf standard American philosophy of taw texts, which describe the universe in which 'all humans are paradigm righl.s holders' and see no need to point oui ihal the actual US record is somewhat dirterent." 12. Lipset (1996) makes the point that the US state and nation are basically conservative. He says that ihis conserrdtism during the New Deal period look on a social dem<icratic tinge (38). Post-war economic growth lessened the class tensions that defined the Great Depression and returned the nation lo its traditional conservatism, i would add that the conservatism is now tinged, to use LJpset's word, with reaclionism. This shift to the right and far right in American conservatism fuels the new drive towards global hegemony and empire. IS. .\n a.'ipeci of ihis ideological function of the state is its treattnent historically and in the present of black masculinity. \-i. David [.evering Lewis (1993:143) says of this time in Du Bois's life," what kept Du Bois busiest was research for his seminar thesis, "Dir Gross und Kltnn
Beirieb des Arkerbavs, in den Sudstaaten Her \hrinigten

Staaten, 1840-1890," or T h e Large and Small-scale System of Agriculture in the Southern United States, 1840-1890."Although he was able to build on his work under Hart at Harvard, the bulk of the essay was based on new reading, as well as new thinking about history and economics from, so to speak, the botlom up. l.ewi.s says the two principal inlluences upon Du Bois in Berlin were Profe.ssors Gustav von Schmoller and Adolph Wagner. Their theory of the state and the economy, Lewis lells us, came from Fichte's notion that competing economic interests were kept in equilibrium by an intelligent state. This Fichtean idea of the relationship of the state to social and economic forces will find its way into Souls, but has all but disappeared by the time of Black lieconstruclicrn. By this time the state is conceptualized as the instrumeiu of white power. 15. Adolph Reed (1997) identifies Du Bois's early political thinking as within the bounds of Fabianism and its idea that science and stieruific programs could act lo advance progressivism from within the state. 16. Modern communisms as well as modern social democracy emerge from the lale nineleenth-century dehates over the nature of the state, rather than over per se. Il is my view that while Hegel is a central inlluence, through his idea that the state transcends society and as such repre.sents it (a view that seemed to iiilorm the Boris Kautsky's view of a "pure" democrao' which resulted from the democratic evoliiiiori of society), Kant s view that the stale is both a moral and ethical aibiter ol societal conflict has also left an enduring influence upon both social democPage 50

ratic and liberal theorists of the state. 17. The American state is indeed a peculiar democratic institution. Like American society it is "both/and" rather than "either/or." Hence, while democracy expanded ihroiighout the nineteenth century for whites, repression and genocide increased for Native Americans and black.s. White populism as manifested by the ptesidency and ideology' of Andrew Jackson stood for expanding rights for whites and the Trail of Tears for Native Americans and Fugitive Slave Act to protect the rights of slave owners. In the late nineteenth century, populism, as with the main thrust of trade unionism, signified to all sides of the "class struggle" expanding while identity and white rights. 18. Adolph Reed (1997) discusses ways that Du Bois understood the state in the early pan of his career as an instrument of altering race relationships in the US. This, Reed .suggests, was an essentially technocratic view of the stale and its functions, especially in addressing the color line. Hence, Reed .sees Du Bois's early effort as attempting to merge Fabianism to the struggle against racial oppression. 19. Here there are two questions in the tactical and strategic struggles of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. One is the stance of Booker T. Washington and later Marcus Garvey. who not oniy irivializfd the struggle to reah/e and uphold bourgeois or ci\il rights to blacks, but also attempted lo sub.slilute what appeared as an economic program for them. The <Jiher was the socialist-Marxist view lo subsiiiute the struggle for bourgeois democracy with the struggle for socialism, formulated, as the class struggle is the struggle for black rights. Each side seems to disregard the nature of racialized state power. 20. Smedtey (1993:191) points out that the idea of Anglo-Saxon superiority became a central part of American racial thinking in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. She continues:
It also bccamp part of the American myihniogy associated wiih repiibliciinistii, Protcsiantism. democracy, laissez-faire cconoinic theory, progress and empire building. The superior "racial" traits of Anglo-Saxons hctamc a stimulus for American expansion. Indeed the iiiyih wa.i at the hcari of the doctrint- of Manifesi Destiny, by which while Americans expressed belief in themselves as a "chosen people," destined tn dominnie others. Over time, many non-En)r|ish whites also ^ssitiiilaied this myth because il provided the basis for the general ideology' of white supremacy.

Important to the new racism of the early twentieth century was "scientific racism" or eugenics, fathered by Francis Gallon. Tukufu Zuberi (2001:53) points out that "Eugenics required an e.ssential difference among humans in order to justify racial and class stratification." Zuberi (54) then continues, "He (Francis Gallon) believed (intelligence) was biologically inherent and that Africans and other people of color were inferior in intelligence to ihe lighter skinned Europwans."


VOLUME 37, NO. 2

21. The idea of white Americans as chosen people is nm adequate to meet the ideological needs of rising American impt-rialisin. To appeal to progressivism and American optimism there was a need for a rational or scientific addendum to ihe chosen people mythological narrative to justify Lhe white American nation's sutus in the worid. Hence, Manifest Destiny and scientific racism combine to produce a credible explanation of the rightsof white Americans to dominate "lesser" peoples. 22. The notion of a Keynesian neo-classical synthesis I take from Irina Osadchaya, From Keynes lo Neihrtassical Synthesis: A Critical Analysis (1974). She argues that neo-Kcyiiesianism. or the Keynesian iieuclassical synthesis attempts to take the static Keynesian model and malcf it d\Tiamic by merging macro theory with micro, or market, economic theories. Robert Skidelsky in hh John Maynard Keynes, The Economist as Savior, 1920-1937, (1992) insisu that Keynes' General Theory was as much vision as economic logic and that the disconnection between economic logic and vision has left his followers attempting to sort out what Keynesianism is in terms of state policy, or macroeconomic theory and policy. In this respect, while Keynesianism can be considered a way of thinking about the economy in new ways, just as Nietzsche thought about morality in new ways, the actual modeling of the post Worid War II economy was left to neo-Keynesians and tbose who promoted a Keynesian neoclassical .synthesis. 23. In this regard the views of Clarence J. Munford (1996, 2001) and Bernard Magubane (1996) are critical. Both are "revisionist" theorists of the state and both draw upon Marxist class notions, but supersede tbem by arguing that tbe racialized dynamic is the core or central dynamic in state formation in the West. Munford asserts, "the modern Western state has legitimized white racism while constantly modernizing it" (2001:111). Magubane asserts tbat the South African example leads him to concur with Fanon and Cesaire who regard fascism "not as an aberration, but as a logical outcome of European colonialism brought home to roost,"

Du Bois. W.E.B. 1896/1986. "Tbe Suppression of the African Slave Trade to the United States of America 1638-1870." In Nathan Huggins (ed.), W.E.B. Du Bois: Writings. New York: Library of America. . 1897/1986. "Tbe Conservation of Races." In Nathan Huggins (ed.), WE.B. Du Bois: Writings. New York: Library of America. _. 1903/1986. Th^ Souls of Black Folk. In Nathan Huggins (ed.), W.E.B Du Bois: Writings. New York: Library of America. . 1909/1987./oftn Broxm. New York: International Publishers. . 1915/1995. 'The African Roots of tbe War." David Levering Lewis (ed.), W.E.B Du Bois: A Reader. New York: Henry Holt and Company . 1935/1992. Black Reconstruction in America, 1860-1880. New York: Atheneum. _. 1945. Color and Detnocracy: Colonies and Peace. Millwood, NY: Kraus-Thomson Organization. _. 1947. The World And Africa: Art Inquiry into the Part Which Africa Has Played in World History. New York: International Publishers. . 1968. T/w Autobiography of W E. B. Du Bois: A Soliloquy on Viewing My Life from the Last Decade of Its Century. New York: International Publishers. Engels, Frederick. 1884/1970. The Ongim of the Family, Frivatf Property and ihe State. In Karl Marx and Frederick EngeLs, Sekded Woriu, Volume 3. Progress Publi.shers: Moscow. Fanon, Franz. 1967. The Wretched of the Earth. Trans, by Constance Farrington. New York: Grove Press. Gordon, Lewis R. 1995. Fanon and the Crisis of European Man: Art. Essay on Philosophy and the Human Sciences. New York: Routledge. Guillaumin, Colette. 1980. T b e Idea of Race and its Elevation to Autonomous, Scientific and Legal Status." In Sociological Theories: Race and Colonialism. Paris: UNESCO. Harris, Cheryl. 1993. "Whiteness as Property." In Harvard Law Review, Volume 106, no. 8:1710-1791. Holbrooke. Richard. "In the Beginning: A Fresh Look at the Early Years of American Empire." In Foreign Affairs, N o v e m b e r / D e c e m b e r , 2002, Vol. 8 1 , no.6:148-152. Horne. Gerald. 1986. Black and Red: WE.B. Du Bois and the Afro-Atnerican Response io the Cold War. I944--I963. Albany: State University of New York Press. Ignatiev, Noel. 1995. How The Irish Became White. New York: Routledge. Jobnson, Chalmers. 2004. The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy and the End of ilie Republic. New York: Henry Holt and Company. K o n t o p o u l o s , Kyriakos. 1993. The Logics of Social Structure. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Lemmert, Cbarles. (2000). "The Race of Time: Du Bois and Reconstruction." In Sociology Hesitant: Thinking With W. E. B. Du Bois Ronald Judy (ed.), Durham: Duke University Press.

Barkin, Kenneth D. 2000. "'Berlin Days' 1892-1894: W.E.B. Du Bois and German Political Economy" in Sociology Hesitant: Thinking uiith W.E.B. Du Bois, ed., Ronald A.T.Judy. Durham: Duke LIniversity Press. Bennett Jr., Leronne. 2000. Forced Into Glory: Abraheim Lincoln's While Dream. Chicago: Jobnson Publisbing Company. Berry, Mary Francis. 1994. Black Resistance WhiU Law: A History of Constitutional Racism in America. New York: The Penguin Press. Bobbitt. Philip. Financial Times, March 12, 2004. "Better Than Empire." Bourdieu, Pierre. 1977. Outline of a Theory of Practice. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.


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Lenin, Vladimir Ilyich, 1918/1964. The State and Revolutiov. In V.I. Lenin Collected Works, Volume 25. Moscow: Progress Publishers. [.ewis, David Levering. 1993. W.E.B. Du Bois: Biography of a Race, 1868-1919. New York: Henry Holt. . 2000. W.E.B. Du Bois: The Eight for Equality and the American Century. New York: Henry Holl. Lipsel. Seymour Martin. 1959. "P<)litical Sociology." In Stxiology Today. Problems and I'rosperts, Robert K. Merlon, Leonard Bloom, Leonard S. Cotlrel,Jr. (eds.). New York: Basic Books. . 1996. American Exceptionalism: A Doubie-Edged Sxi'ord. New York: W. W. Norlon. Magtibane. Bernard Makhosezwe. 1996. The Making of a Racist State: British Imperialism and The Union of South Africa, 1873-1910. Trenion, NJ: Africa World Press. Millis, Charles W.1997. The Radal Contract. Ithaca: Cornell University Press. Mudimbe, V. Y. 1988. The Invenlion of Africa: Gnoiis, Philosophy and the Order of KnowUd^. Bloominglon: University of Indiana Press. Munford, Clarence J. 1996. Race and R/^aralions: A Black Perspective for the 21" Century. Trenton. NJ: .Africa World Press. . 2001. Rac^ and Civilization: Rrbirth of Black Cenirality. Trenton, NJ: Africa World Press. Nozick, Robert. 1974. Anarchy, Slate and Utopia. New York: Basic Bctoks. Osadchaya, Irina. 1974. From Keynes to Neoclassical A Critical Analysis. Moscow: Progress Publishers, Rawls, John. 1971. A Theory ofJustice. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. Reed, Adolph. 1997. W. E. B. Du Bois and American Political Thought: Eabianism and tfie Colm Line. New York: Oxford University Press. Roediger. David R. 1991. The Wages of Whiteness: Race and the Making of the Ameriain Working Class. London; Verso. Said. Edward. 1978. Orientalism. New York: Vintage Books. Schafer, Alex. 2001. "AV. E. B. Du Bois. German Social Thought and the Race Divide in American Progressivism, 1892-1909." The-Journal of Amerimn History, Volume 88. No. 3 (December 2001). Skidelsky, Robert. 1992. John Maynard Keynes: The Economist as Saviour, 1920-1937. New York: Penguin, Smedley, Audry. 1993. Race in North America: Origin and Evolution ofa Worldvieju. Botilder: Westview Press. Zimmerman, Warren. 2002. First Great Triumph: HowFive Americans Made Their Country a World Power. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Zuberi, Tukufu. 2001. Thicker Than Blood: Now Racial Statistics Lie. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.

THEBLACKSCHOU\R has been receiving manuscripts from many black writers. We are particularly interested in receiving manuscripts from young, newly developing black writers and from black students. Any writer or scholar submitting a manuscript should observe the following guidelines: manuscripts may range in length from 10 to 30 pages, typed, doublespaced; they should also be submitted on floppy disk or CD-ROM; PC-format. E-mail manuscripts to The Editor. manuscripts should be accompanied with a stamped, self-addressed envelope; we are not responsible for lost or unreturned manuscripts. manuscripts should also be accompanied by a note or vita uath genera! information on the writer's background for an introductory paragraph, should the work be accepted. Submit manuscripts to:

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