The Long, Lingering Shadow is a masterful examination of the law’s critical role in establishing and maintaining racial hierarchy in Brazil, Spanish America, and the United States, particularly for individuals of African descent. By so doing Robert J. Cottrol brings into sharp focus the essential value and necessity of comparative historical analyses of racial formations and race relations as these relate to legal processes. Part 1 discusses the evolution of the institution of slavery and the social forces that led to its abolition. This section also provides an excellent analysis of the development of fluid and ambiguous racial categories as well as social mobility in terms of racial hierarchy and social stratification in Latin America. These patterns differ markedly from the equally hierarchical yet more constricting ones in the United States. Part 2 offers a compelling cross-regional examination of the problematic relationship between...

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