Race and the Senses: The Felt Politics of Racial Embodiment

Race and the Senses: The Felt Politics of Racial Embodiment


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In Race and the Senses, Sachi Sekimoto and Christopher Brown explore the sensorial and phenomenological materiality of race as it is felt and sensed by the racialized subjects. Situating the lived body as an active, affective, and sensing participant in racialized realities, they argue that race is not simply marked on our bodies, but rather felt and registered through our senses. They illuminate the sensorial landscape of racialized world by combining the scholarship in sensory studies, phenomenology, and intercultural communication. Each chapter elaborates on the felt bodily sensations of race, racism, and racialization that illuminate how somatic labor plays a significant role in the construction of racialized relations of sensing. Their thought-provoking theorizing about the relationship between race and the senses include race as a sensory assemblage, the phenomenology of the racialized face and tongue, kinesthetic feelings of blackness, as well as the possibility of cross-racial empathy. Race is not merely socially constructed, but multisensorially assembled, engaged, and experienced. Grounded in the authors’ experiences, one as a Japanese woman living in the USA, and the other as an African American man from Chicago, Race and the Senses is a book about how we feel the racialized world into being.



Publication Date



Bloomsbury Academic




sensory studies, race


Gender, Race, Sexuality, and Ethnicity in Communication | Race and Ethnicity | Race, Ethnicity and Post-Colonial Studies

Race and the Senses: The Felt Politics of Racial Embodiment