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Drawing the Global Colour Line

by Henry Reynolds, Marilyn Lake

In 1900 W. E. B. DuBois prophesied that the colour line would be the key problem of the twentieth-century and he later identified one of its key dynamics: the new religion of whiteness that was sweeping the world. Whereas most historians have confined their studies of race-relations to a national framework, this book studies the transnational circulation of people and ideas, racial knowledge and technologies that under-pinned the construction of self-styled white men’s countries from South Africa, to North America and Australasia. Marilyn Lake and Henry Reynolds show how in the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century these countries worked in solidarity to exclude those they defined as not-white, actions that provoked a long international struggle for racial equality. Their findings make clear the centrality of struggles around mobility and sovereignty to modern formulations of both race and human rights.



About Henry Reynolds

Henry Reynolds is the author of fourteen books, including An Indelible Stain?, The Other Side of the Frontier, Black Pioneers, Fate of a Free People, This Whispering in Our Hearts and the award-winning Why Weren't We Told? Born in Hobart, Tasmania, in 1938, Henry taught in secondary schools in Australia and England after receiving a Master of Arts from the University of Tasmania, and for many years was on the teaching staff in the history department of James Cook University in Townsville. He is currently Research Professor at the University of Tasmania and is the recipient of an Australian Research Council Senior Research Fellowship.


About Marilyn Lake

Marilyn Lake is Professor in History and ARC Professorial Research Fellow at the University of Melbourne. Her first book, based on her MA thesis, was A Divided Society: Tasmania during World War I (1975). It was followed by The Limits of Hope: Soldier Settlement in Victoria 1915–38 (1987). Her current research focuses on the international history of Australian democracy.



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