Document Type

Book Review

Publication Date





Mississippi Valley Historical Association




The goal of Fred Lee in Extraordinary Racial Politics is to explicate a recurring form of political activity that is distinct from either revolutionary politics that convulse the entire polity or normal politics that yield formal laws and institutions. Between these phenomena, he describes a political experience that can be “unusual, episodic, intensive, decisive, and transformative” yet leaves its mark on a polity (p. 2). Lee is less concerned with the laws on the books than he is with an informal set of potent racial formations that are both sticky and generative: sometimes they are partly codified (as with legal segregation), at other times they are generally unseen but fill gaps in our formal understandings of the law (say, in treaties with native populations and policies demanding their removal), and sometimes they supplant them entirely over time (as with latent notions of citizenship).

Link to Publisher Site (BU Community Subscription)

Included in

Law Commons



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.