Free Download PDF Not “A Nation of Immigrants”: Settler Colonialism, White Supremacy, and a History of Erasure and Exclusion


Download PDF

Debunks the pervasive and self-congratulatory myth that our country is proudly founded by and for immigrants, and urges readers to embrace a more complex and honest history of the United States

Whether in political debates or discussions about immigration around the kitchen table, many Americans, regardless of party affiliation, will say proudly that we are a nation of immigrants. In this bold new book, historian Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz asserts this ideology is harmful and dishonest because it serves to mask and diminish the US’s history of settler colonialism, genocide, white supremacy, slavery, and structural inequality, all of which we still grapple with today.

She explains that the idea that we are living in a land of opportunity—founded and built by immigrants—was a convenient response by the ruling class and its brain trust to the 1960s demands for decolonialization, justice, reparations, and social equality. Moreover, Dunbar-Ortiz charges that this feel good—but inaccurate—story promotes a benign narrative of progress, obscuring that the country was founded in violence as a settler state, and imperialist since its inception.

While some of us are immigrants or descendants of immigrants, others are descendants of white settlers who arrived as colonizers to displace those who were here since time immemorial, and still others are descendants of those who were kidnapped and forced here against their will. This paradigm shifting new book from the highly acclaimed author of An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States charges that we need to stop believing and perpetuating this simplistic and a historical idea and embrace the real (and often horrific) history of the United States.


From the Publisher

quote imagequote image

quote image

quote image

quote image

quote image

quote image

quote image

“A one-woman wrecking ball against the tower of lies erected by generations of official and television historians.”

— Ishmael Reed

“It could not be more timely. A must-read history for our troubling present.”

—Barbara Ransby, author of Making All Black Lives Matter

“A paradigm-shifting work…There is a reckoning on every page of this liberating book.”

—Patrick Higgins, anti-imperialist historian and activist

Publisher‏:‎Beacon Press (August 24, 2021)
Language‏:‎English
Hardcover‏:‎392 pages
ISBN-10‏:‎0807036293
ISBN-13‏:‎978-0807036297
Item Weight‏:‎1.58 pounds
Dimensions‏:‎6.23 x 1.29 x 9.33 inches
Download PDF