Belizean Racial Project: A Preliminary exploration of a black racial project

  • Belizean Racial Project: A Preliminary exploration of a black racial project

by Devon Lee



This preliminary Belizean racial project connects how Black identity was used as a political platform through a Pan-African framework to overthrow colonialism and neo-colonial aspects of what developed into a contemporary nationalist outlook. This project utilized a subjective outlook derived from historiographical materials, memoirs, periodicals and journal articles to show how Black collectivity as a tool for liberation (Pan-Africanism) was used as a racial project and later developed into a national project in Belize. According to Michael Omiand Howard Winant, a racial project is “simultaneously an interpretation, representation, or explanation of racial dynamics, and an effort to reorganize and redistribute resources along particular racial lines. Racial projects connect what race means in a particular discursive practice and the ways in which both structures and everyday experiences are racially organized, based upon that meaning.”
This thesis adapts their notion of a racial project to a Belizean context by substituting Omi and Winant’s theoretical limitations that position their understanding of racial dynamics through the lens and activity of intellectuals with a subjective approach that highlights the intersection between grassroots agency and the development of a politicized Black identity.This is done to demonstrate what race is doing given the context of racial dynamics as it relates to the developing Belizean political system. 
This shows how Pan-Africanism in the historical process of Belizean national development and its application as a contemporary nationalist framework.



Read full article here!



Keywords: Pan-African, Black consciousness, Belize, politics, identity, race


Suggested APA Reference: Lee, D. 2012. Belizean Racial Project: A Preliminary exploration of a black racial project. Kansas: University of Kansas.

Contact Us

Belize History Association
Secretariat, Institute for Social and Cultural Research (ISCR)
National Institute of Culture and History (NICH)
Mountain View Blvd,
Belmopan City,

(T) 822-3307 (F) 822-3815
[email protected]

The BHA was established under the auspices of the National Institute of Culture and History and is supported by the Belize Archives & Records Service, Ministry of Education, Youth, Sports, and Culture, and Ministry of Foreign Affairs.