Introduction Reproductive Racial Capitalism

Jennifer L. Morgan, Alys Eve Weinbaum

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    This essay introduces the special issue with a critique of Cedric Robinson’s heuristic, “racial capitalism,” and a discussion of our titular intervention: “reproductive racial capitalism.” The essay is necessarily grounded in the reproductive crisis of the present day. It centers the histories and afterlives of hereditary racial slavery and the radical contestations and refusals of its logics. Overall, it argues that contemporary racial capitalism is always already reproductive. Reproductive labor and the experiences of conception, gestation, parturition, and childrearing are the heart and engine of both slave racial capitalism and contemporary forms of reproductive racial capitalism. They are also the sites from which reproductive racial capitalism and its exploitative conditions were contested under slavery, are being challenged in the present moment, and yet might be altogether refused in the future.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)1-19
    Number of pages19
    JournalHistory of the Present
    Issue number1
    StatePublished - Apr 1 2024


    • feminism
    • human reproduction
    • Marxism
    • racial capitalism
    • slavery

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • History


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