Graduation Year


Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Second Department

Africana Studies

Reader 1

Yuval Avnur

Reader 2

Mukasa Mubirumusoke

Reader 3

Maryan Soliman


In order to maintain a structure of oppression that we still observe today with police shootings and premature death, theories of the “inferior” Black race and “superior” White race rest on the ideology of White supremacy. A unique and often overlooked premise of White supremacy is founded in the conception of the difference between a thing and a human. This thesis argues that the foundation of White supremacy is paradoxical in so far as it facilitates and perpetuates contradictions rooted in the desire to reconcile an object/human duality to subjugate Black individuals. This view, on the one hand, assumes that the Black body can be conceived as and through an object, i.e., ontological reduction to the body, while also, on the other hand, identifying specific instances where a sense of human agency is attributed to Black people, but only to further subjugate them. To develop this argument, this paper will examine the contradictory nature of White Supremacy and Anti-Blackness, trace the historical formation of racialization, and outline how these structures impose burdens and inhumane limitations on the reproductive freedom and self-constructed identities of Black women.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.