A Lacanian Analysis of Race
Routledge – 2000 – 196 pages
Series: Opening Out: Feminism for Today
Desiring Whiteness provides a compelling new interpretation of how we understand race. Race is often seen to be a social construction. Nevertheless, we continue to deploy race thinking in our everyday life as a way of telling people apart visually.
How do subjects become raced? Is it common sense to read bodies as racially marked? Employing Lacan's theories of the subject and sexual difference, Seshadri-Crooks explores how the discourse of race parallels that of sexual difference in making racial identity a fundamental component of our thinking.
Through close readings of literary and film texts, Seshardi-Crooks also investigates whether race is a system of difference equally determined by Whiteness. She argues that it is in relation to Whiteness that systems of racial classification are organized, endowing it with a power to shape human difference.
Kalpana Seshadri-Crooks is Assistant Professor of English at Boston College, MA, USA