top of page
Racial Transformations: Latinos and Asians
Remaking the United States
(Duke University Press,  2006)

Racial Transformations is a unique volume that marvelously engages the intersection of Asian American and Latino Studies and helps us grasp the distinct patterns of racialization among groups considered neither white nor black.”

      -- Michael Omi, co-author of  

         Racial Formation in the United States


“This collection marks an important intervention in the history and historiography of ‘race,’ ethnicity, immigration, and citizenship in the United States. The essays offer important and provocative rationales for thinking through these complex issues from a broader comparative and critical perspective.”

     -- David Gutiérrez, author of 

Walls and Mirrors: Mexican Americans, Mexican Immigrants, and the Politics of Ethnicity


“Nicholas De Genova’s edited volume, Racial Transformations, is the first book-length publication to engage in a sustained and critical dialogue across Latino and Asian American studies . . . Racial Transformations offers fascinating glimpses into the complex and often diverse trajectories of immigrant groups in the United States. De Genova’s collection is an original, well-documented, and thought-provoking intervention.”

      --Jorge Duany, author of 

        Blurred Borders: Transnational Migration between the                     Hispanic Caribbean and the United States

Racial Transformations: Latinos and Asians Remaking the United States (Duke University Press, 2006) furthers Nicholas De Genova’s theoretical ambition to disrupt and transcend more conventional and rather balkanized approaches, whereby various racially subordinated groups tend to be studied in isolation.  In this anthology, a diverse multidisciplinary group of scholars focuses simultaneously on both Latinos and Asians, in order to examine in comparative perspective how their historical experiences and intersections help to illuminate and complicate the hegemonic polarity of whiteness and Blackness.  In coordinating this collection, De Genova’s approach contributes to reorienting the critical force of this scholarship away from “minority” groups, in and of themselves, to the larger social formations of U.S. nationalism and the transnational scope of its imperial projects through which these groups have been socio-politically produced as such.  


De Genova’s Introduction to the volume theorizes the enduring hegemony of the Black-white binary as an effect of the elision of colonialism and global power in the historical constitution of the United States, and delineates the salience of Native American subjugation for apprehending Latino and Asian racializations in the present.





Latino and Asian Racial Formations at the Frontiers of U.S. Nationalism

Nicholas De Genova  1


Part One: Racial Science, Social Control 


1.   Colonial Vision, Racial Visibility:

Racializations in Puerto Rico and the Philippines during the Initial Period of U.S. Colonization

Gary Y. Okihiro  23


2.   Inverting Racial Logic:

How Public Health Discourse and Standards Racialized the Meanings of Japanese and Mexican in Los Angeles, 1910–1924

Natalia Molina  40


3.   Getting the Measure of Tomorrow:

Chinese and Chicano Americans under the Racial Gaze, 1934–1935 and 1942–1944

Victor Jew  62


Part Two: Contradictions of Coalition 


4. The Limits of Interracial Coalitions: Méndez v. Westminster Reexamined 

Toni Robinson and Greg Robinson  93


5.  The Political Significance of Race:

Asian American and Latino Redistricting Debates in California and New York

Leland T. Saito  120


Part Three: Perils of Inclusion 


6.  Joining the State:

Sexuality and Citizenship in Junot Díaz and Chang-rae Lee

Andrea Levine  147


7.   The Passion: The Betrayals of Elián González and Wen Ho Lee

Crystal Parikh  170

bottom of page