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Unformatted text preview: f structure and object) to Fanon’s. Hernton’s
book, Sex and Racism in America, originally published in 1965, became an instant classic, and was eventually
translated into a half dozen languages and reprinted at least three times. In response to his admittedly polemical
(though no less serious and thoughtful) commentary, literary personalities the likes of Langston Hughes raved
that Hernton exhibited an unparalleled temerity to ‘frankly tackle that old bugaboo S-E-X as it relates to life,
liberty, and the pursuit of [racial] integration’. In what came to be known as his founding scholarly
achievement, Hernton claimed to explicate, in condensed form, the fundamental relation of racism and sexuality
in the United States. He dubbed his conceptual centerpiece ‘sexual racism’, the sentiment of antimiscegenation. 17 Doubtless, none would dispute his central thesis, ‘that all race relations tend to be,
however subtle, sex relations’, or put differently, that ‘the race problem is inextricably connected with sex’
(Hernton, 1988, p. 6). We can grant by this point that race is unavoidably sexualised, that its operation
always involves a sexual politics, and that, concomitantly, sexualities in the modern world are always
already raed (see Dyer, 1997). But for our purposes it will be necessary t...
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This document was uploaded on 03/26/2014.
- Spring '14