Beacon Press: An Afro-Indigenous History of the United States
Login Cart

An Afro-Indigenous History of the United States

Author: Kyle T. Mays

The first intersectional history of the Black and Native American struggle for freedom in our country that also reframes our understanding of who was Indigenous in early America

Beginning with pre-Revolutionary America and moving into the movement for Black lives and contemporary Indigenous activism, Afro-Indigenous historian Kyle T. Mays argues that the foundations of the US are rooted in antiblackness and settler colonialism, and that these parallel oppressions continue into the present. He explores how Black and Indigenous peoples have always resisted and struggled for freedom, sometimes together, and sometimes apart. Whether to end African enslavement and Indigenous removal or eradicate capitalism and colonialism, Mays show how the fervor of Black and Indigenous peoples calls for justice have consistently sought to uproot white supremacy.

Mays uses a wide-array of historical activists and pop culture icons, “sacred” texts, and foundational texts like the Declaration of Independence and Democracy in America. He covers the civil rights movement and freedom struggles of the 1960s and 1970s, and explores current debates around the use of Native American imagery and the cultural appropriation of Black culture. Mays compels us to rethink both our history as well as contemporary debates and to imagine the powerful possibilities of Afro-Indigenous solidarity.


About the Series

Beacon Press’s ReVisioning History series consists of accessibly written books by notable scholars that reconstruct and reinterpret US history from diverse perspectives.
Bookmark and Share
“Nuanced and illuminating, this book is a worthy addition to a remarkable series.”
Booklist

“Only twenty years ago, Kyle Mays’s voice wouldn’t even have passed through academia’s and media’s gatekeepers. The fact that a voice like this can be heard today and tell his own story is unexpected great news for America . . . and it’s just the beginning.”
—Raoul Peck, director of I Am Not Your Negro and Exterminate All the Brutes

“Framed as an answer to questions in Mays’s life as well as his scholarship, this is a startlingly ambitious and deeply engaging study. Refusing to separate two sprawling, interconnected stories but respecting the integrity of each, Mays changes also the whole story of US whiteness as a system of thought and power. A perfect book to be read in classes or given to friends who want to understand the mess we are in and the resources of those who resist.”
—David Roediger, author of How Race Survived US History

“This is a bold and original narrative that is required reading to comprehend the deep historical relationship between the Indigenous peoples who were transported from Africa into chattel slavery and the Indigenous peoples who were displaced by European settler colonialism to profit from the land and resources, two parallel realities in search of self-determination and justice.”
—Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, author of An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States

“A bold, innovative, and astute analysis of how Blackness and Indigeneity have been forged as distinct yet overlapping social locations through the needs of capital, the logic of the nation-state, and the aims of US empire. While we know that slavery and settler colonialism are intricately linked, Kyle Mays uniquely demonstrates that the afterlives of these two institutions are also linked. They provide the land, bodies, and capital for ‘newer’ systems of bondage to flourish, such as mass incarceration. You will never think of the peoples’ history the same way after reading An Afro-Indigenous History of the United States.”
—Robin D. G. Kelley, author of Freedom Dreams: The Black Radical Imagination

“Dr. Mays brilliantly makes accessible the knowledge of how Native, Black, and Afro-Indigenous communities, under the oppressive projects of settler colonialism and white supremacy, have navigated points of tension and harm, while simultaneously revealing instances when we’ve resisted by way of solidarity and allyship. Ultimately, he reminds us that both the ‘Indian problem’ and the ‘Negro problem’ are, in fact, a white supremacist problem.”
—Melanin Mvskoke, Afro-Indigenous (Mvskoke Creek) activist

Author’s Note

INTRODUCTION
Afro-Indigenous History

CHAPTER ONE
Indigenous Africans and Native Americans in Prerevolutionary America

CHAPTER TWO
Antiblackness, Settler Colonialism, and the US Democratic Project

CHAPTER THREE
Enslavement, Dispossession, Resistance

CHAPTER FOUR
Black and Indigenous (Inter)Nationalisms During the Progressive Era

CHAPTER FIVE
Black Americans and Native Americans in the Civil Rights Imagination

CHAPTER SIX
Black Power and Red Power, Freedom and Sovereignty

CHAPTER SEVEN
Black and Indigenous Popular Cultures in the Public Sphere

CHAPTER EIGHT
The Matter of Black and Indigenous Lives, Policing, and Justice

CONCLUSION
The Possibilities for Afro-Indigenous Futures

POSTSCRIPT
Sovereignty and Citizenship: The Case of the Five Tribes and the Freedmen

Acknowledgments
Notes
Photo Credits
Index

You might also be interested in:

An Afro-Indigenous History of the United States

ISBN: 978-080701168-3
Publication Date: 11/16/2021
Size:6 x 9 Inches (US)
Price:  $27.95
Format: Cloth
Not Yet Published
Will Ship On: November 2021
(Backorder policy)
Also Available In: