Dr. Jeffrey B. Perry (Jeff Perry) is an independent, working-class scholar formally educated at Princeton (AB, 1968). Harvard (withdrew to travel through the Americas), Rutgers (MA, 1976), and Columbia (MPhil 1979 and PhD 1987). At Princeton he studied with Julian Jaynes, at Rutgers he wrote on "Seniority" under Wells Keddie, and at Columbia he wrote on Colonial Virginia under Alden Vaughan and on Hubert Harrison under Nathan Huggins and Hollis Lynch.
Dr. Perry's work focuses on the role of white supremacy as a retardant to progressive social change and on the centrality of struggle against white supremacy to progressive social change efforts.
He writes and speaks in particular on two of the most important thinkers on race and class in the twentieth century: Hubert Harrison "The Father of Harlem Radicalism" and founder of the militant "New Negro Movement" (in 1917); and Theodore W. Allen who pioneered his class struggle-based "white skin privilege" analysis in 1965 and authored the two-volume "The Invention of the White Race" (Verso Books, 1994, 1997)
For fifty-plus years Jeff Perry has been active in the working class movement as a rank-and-file worker and as a union shop steward, officer, editor, and retiree. He has also been involved in domestic and international social justice issues including: affirmative action; workers', women's, tenants', and Black, Latino, and Asian rights; workers' grievances; union democracy; and anti-apartheid, anti-war, and anti-imperialist work. A vast collection of his materials in these areas (including several hundred articles that he wrote) have been placed at the Special Collections and University Archives, University of Massachusetts-Amherst (where they are being processed) and additional materials are currently being prepared for repository placement.
Perry was influenced toward serious study of matters of class and the importance of opposition to white supremacy through personal experiences and readings and through the work of an independent, autodidactic, working class scholar and close personal friend, the late Theodore William Allen (1919-2005). Allen pioneered his class struggle-based "white skin privilege" analysis in 1965. He was also the author of The Invention of the White Race, (2 vols., Verso Books, 1994, 1997, new edition 2012; and of the new composite edition [2-volumes in one], 2022) and of the "Summary of the Argument of The Invention of the White Race" (in two parts, 1998).
Allen's research and writings on the role of white supremacy in United States history and on the centrality of the struggle against white supremacy to social change efforts disposed Perry to be receptive to the life and work of Hubert H. Harrison (1883-1927), another independent, autodidactic, anti-white-supremacist, working class intellectual.
Perry edited A Hubert Harrison Reader (Wesleyan University Press, 2001, 2022) and he wrote new introductions and supplemental notes for the expanded edition of Hubert Harrison's When Africa Awakes: The "Inside Story" of the Stirrings and Strivings of the New Negro in the Western World (Diasporic Africa Press, 2015).
Most importantly, Perry has authored a major two-volume biography of Harrison, which is believed to be the first, full-life, multi-volume biography of an Afro-Caribbean and only the fourth of an African American after those of Booker T. Washington, W.E.B. Du Bois, and Langston Hughes.
Volume 1 -- "Hubert Harrison: The Voice of Harlem Radicalism, 1883-1918" (Columbia University Press, 2008) -- was nominated for the Deutscher Memorial Prize and Herbert Feis Award.
Volume 2 - Hubert Harrison: The Struggle for Equality, 1918-1927 (Columbia University Press, December 2020) was nominated for: the Pulitzer Prize; the Wesley-Logan Prize in African Diaspora History of the American Historical Association; the Isaac and Tamara Deutscher Memorial Prize; the Plutarch Award; the National Book Critics Circle Award; and the John Hope Franklin Publication Prize (from the American Studies Association).
This two-volume biography was recently reviewed by: Robert Geene II in the June 13-20, 2022, "Nation" magazine by Sean I. Ahern (along with "A Hubert Harrison Reader") in "Black Agenda Report" and "New York Almanak"; by John Woodford in "Against the Current" No. 219, July/August 2022; and by Carlett Spike for "Princeton Alumni Weekly."
Dr. Perry, an archivist, bibliophile, and historian, preserved and inventoried the "Hubert H. Harrison Papers" and helped to place them at the Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University and to develop the "Hubert H. Harrison Papers, 1893-1927: Finding Aid." These efforts have contributed to making writings of Hubert Harrison freely-accessible worldwide via the Hubert Harrison Papers Digital Collection on the Columbia University Rare Book and Manuscript Library website. Most recently Perry has placed a large quantity of his research material on Harrison at Columbia.
In addition, Perry is the literary executor for, and chronicler of the life of, Theodore William Allen, whose Papers he preserved and inventoried prior to placing them at the Robert S. Cox Special Collections and University Archives at the University of Massachusetts Amherst where many are being put online. He edited and introduced Allen's Class Struggle and the Origin of Racial Slavery: The Invention of the White Race (1975; Center for the Study of Working Class Life, State University of New York, Stony Brook, 2006) and he has authored numerous other pieces on Allen including a lengthy treatment of his life and work in "The Developing Conjuncture and Some Insights From Hubert Harrison and Theodore W. Allen on the Centrality of the Fight Against White Supremacy" in (Cultural Logic, July 2010 ).
Perry contributed new introductions, back matter, internal study guides, and expanded indexes for the (Verso Books, November 2012), expanded edition of Allen's two-volume The Invention of the White Race (Vol 1: Racial Oppression and Social Control and Vol. 2: The Origin of Racial Oppression in Anglo-America) and he wrote a new introduction for the new composite edition (two volumes in one) of Allen's The Invention of the White Race (Verso Books, 2022).
Writings by Dr. Perry have appeared in Against the Current/Solidarity, AfricanGlobe, AlterNet, American Communist History, Amsterdam News, Black Agenda Report, Black Commentator, Black Past.org, Black Perspectives, Black Star News, Claridad, Columbia University Press Blog, CounterPunch, Cultural Logic, Daily Princetonian, DSAUSA, Encyclopedia of African American Literature, Encyclopediadotcom, Encyclopedia of the Harlem Renaissance, Facts For Working People, Hartford Guardian, The Herald (Zimbabwe), History News Network, Journal of American History, Journal of Pan-African Studies, Labor Notes, Lies of Our Times, Local 2627 AFSCME, Local 300 Mail Handlers News (editor, 1988-2007), The Mail Handler (editor, 1988), Mail Handler Voice (edior, 1974-1988), New Labor Forum, New Politics, New York Workers News and Perspectives (1978), Pambazuka News, Passaic Herald News, Princeton Alumni Weekly, Race and History, The Record, Socialism and Democracy, SocialistWorker.org, Souls, Stansbury Forum, Truthout, The Truth Seeker, Your Union News, Z Net, Zinn Education Project, and various other encyclopedias, journals, newspapers, and labor publications.
In efforts at public outreach Dr. Perry has spoken on radio and TV and delivered presentations at hundreds of domestic and international venues including colleges, universities, unions, libraries, bookstores, museums, conferences, community and educational forums, high schools, and a prison.
Here are video samples of Dr. Perry's Slide Presentation talks on Theodore W. Allen's "The Invention of the White Race" and on Hubert Harrison: The Voice of Harlem Radicalism, 1883-1918.
#HubertHarrison #HubertHHarrison #HubertHenryHarrison #TheodoreWAllen #TheodoreWilliam Allen #mailhandlers #TedAllen #JeffreyBPerry #JeffreyBabcockPerry #JeffPerry #FatherofHarlemRadicalism #StruggleforEquality #InventionoftheWhiteRace #DevelopingConjuncture #laborandrace "postallabor #whiteskinprivilege #whiteprivilege #whiterace #Harlemradicalism #socialism "raceradicalism #NewNegro #NewNegroMovement #racialoppression #socialcontrol #St.Croix #EugeneV.Debs #APhilipRandolph #MarcusGarvey #JoelARogers RichardBMoore #TheVoice #TheVoiceoftheNegro #LibertyLeague #NegroWorld #NYCBoardofEducation #AfroCaribbeanRadicalism #BookReviews #soapboxoratory #ArthurASchomburg #ArthurSchomburg #diaries #scrapbooks #journalism #Blackjournalism #InternationalColoredUnityLeague #paramus #princeton #rutgers #harvard #columbia #verso #umassamherst #l300 #npmhu #hoboken #jerseycity #psp #socialism #freethought #TruthSeeker InternationalColoredUnityLeague #ICUL #BostonChronicle "soapboxoratory #lecturer #ColumbiaUniversityPress #ColumbiaRareBooksandManuscriptLibrary #VersoBooks #CRBML #AugustaSavage #EugeneVDebs #BottoHouse #ElizabethGurleyFlynn #BigBillHaywood #BookerTWashington #WEBDuBois #Internationalism #Communism #racefirst #TheNation #SeanIAhern
"Introduction" to the Pulitzer Prize nominated "Hubert Harrison: The Struggle for Equality, 1918-1927"
Columbia University Press has posted online the "Introduction" to the Pulitzer Prize nominated "Hubert Harrison: The Struggle for Equality, 1918-1927." The brief "Introduction" is well worth the read and can be found on the CUP webpage under "Excerpt" Here The book can be obtained at 20% off using code "CUP20"
Special 40% off on the forthoming (January 2022) Theodore W. Allen, "The Invention of the White Race" Consolidated (Two Volumes in One) Edition" (Verso Books) at HERE
"THE INVENTION OF THE WHITE RACE"
OVER 311,000 VIEWS
Jeffrey B. Perry
Slide Presentation/Talk on
The Invention of the White Race (Verso Books) by Theodore W. Allen
with special emphasis on Vol. II: The Origin of Racial Oppression in Anglo-America.
Hosted by “The Hubert Harrison and Theodore W. Allen Society”
Filmed by Fred Nguyen on January 31, 2013
Brecht Forum, New York City
Courtesy Fansmiles Productions.
Some Major Items Authored or Edited
by Jeffrey B. Perry
"Jeffrey B. Perry, A Spartan Who Took a Different Path"
"jeffrey B. Perry, A Spartan Who Took a Different Path" article in "The Paramus Post," February 13, 2022.
"Jeffrey B. Perry: Freethinker, Historian, Educator" by Karen F. Mranarevic in "Pascack Valley Community Life" (Westood, NJ), February 4, 2009 -- see HERE
“Hubert Harrison: The Voice of Harlem Radicalism”
Presentation by Jeffrey B. Perry
Dudley Public Library, Roxbury, Massachusetts,
February 15, 2014
Over 12,000 Views
The event was hosted by Mimi Jones and sponsored by Friends of the Dudley Library, Alliance for a Secular and Democratic South Asia, and Massachusetts Global Action. Contact people included Mirna Lascano, Umang Kumar, and Charlie Welch in addition to Mimi Jones.
Video Prepared by Boston Neighborhood News TV’s “Around Town” -- Channel: Comcast 9 / RCN 15 Justin D. Shannahan, Production Manager, Ted Lewis, cameraman, and Laura Kerivan, copy editor for Boston Neighborhood Network Television. Nia Grace, Marketing and Promotions Manager of BNNTV, and Scott Mercer, of BNNTV, coordinated efforts to make the video available.
Ilva Harrison (Hubert Harrison's granddaughter, on left), Charles Richardson (Hubert Harrison's grandson), Onaje Allan Gumbs (nephew of Hubert Harrison's daughter-in-law), Yvette N. Richardson-Hudson (Hubert Harrison's great-granddaughter), Jeffrey B. Perry, and Yvette's two daughters, Nubia and Seba (Hubert Harrison's great-great-granddaughters), at the May 31, 2009, Harlem Ceremony at St. Mary's Church presenting a New York City Council Resolution posthumously honoring Hubert Harrison. From the Whitnie Payne photo album.
Over 11,000 Views
Interview conducted with Caeser Pink and staff of Arete Living Arts Center (Brooklyn, NY) on Saturday, June 8, 2013, at the Labor and Working Class History Association (LAWCHA) National Conference, at Brooklyn - CUNY Center for Worker Education, 25 Broadway, 7th floor, New York, NY, 10004.
Posted on 7 April 2014.
For key insights from Theodore W. Allen on U.S. Labor History CLICK HERE!
For information on Theodore W. Allen’s “The Invention of the White Race” CLICK HERE!
For additional writings by and about Theodore W. Allen CLICK HERE!
For writings by and about Hubert Harrison CLICK HERE!
For information on Arete Living Arts Foundation CLICK HERE!
“Hubert Harrison, Theodore W. Allen,
and the Centrality of the Struggle Against White Supremacy"
by Jeffrey B. Perry (Introduction)
July 26, 2014
The Commons, Brooklyn, NY
"The Invention of the White Race": Dr. Jeffrey Perry Discusses the New Expanded Edition of Theodore William Allen's The Invention of the White Race (Verso Books, 2012). Interview by Gary Glennell Toms, January 29, 2013.
This video – “’White Race’ Privileges, ‘The Invention of the White Race,’ and the Centrality of the Struggle Against White Supremacy -- Insights From the Work of Theodore W. Allen” is from an October 25, 2014, slide presentation/talk by Jeffrey B. Perry filmed by Enaa Doug Greene at the Center for Marxist Education, Cambridge, Massachusetts.
At Eso Won Books, Los Angeles, October 13, 2009. Left to right--biographer Jeffrey B. Perry, Eso Won co-owner Tom Hamilton, Eso Won co-owner James Fugate, and Charles Richardson (Hubert Harrison's grandson).
Hubert Harrison the “Father Harlem Radicalism” and Founder of the “New Negro Movement”
Presentation by Jeffrey B. Perry
at the St. Croix Landmarks Society Event “Coming Home to St. Croix”
at Estate Whim, St. Croix, July 19, 2016.
is seen in the opening segment of
"Signed, Sealed, and Delivered: Labor Struggle in the Post Office" (1980)
by Tami Gold, Dan Gordon, and Erik Lewis.
"'What do you mean I can't strike?': Confronting the Taylor Law" -- A video recording of a CUNY Adjunct Project event held May 4, 2011, with speakers Cindy Gorn, Ajamu Sankofa, Jeffrey B. Perry, and Marvin Holland and facilitated by Conor Tomás Reed. Video recorded and edited by Jill Humphries, PhD. CLICK HERE
The Developing Conjuncture and Some Insights From
Hubert Harrison and Theodore W. Allen
On the Centrality of the Fight Against White Supremacy
By Jeffrey B. Perry
(see top left of this page for link to the article)
Theodore W. Allen
Harrison and Allen and the Centrality of the Struggle Against White-Supremacy
Some Class and Racial Aspects of The Conjuncture
Deepening Economic Crisis
U.S. Workers Faring Badly
White Supremacist Shaping
Millions are Suffering and Conditions are Worsening
Insights from Hubert Harrison
Arrival in America, Contrast with St. Croix
Socialist Party Writings
“Southernism or Socialism – which?”
The Socialist Party Puts [the “White”] Race First and Class After
Class Consciousness, White Supremacy, and the "Duty to Champion the Cause of the Negro"
On “The Touchstone” and the Two-Fold Character of Democracy in America
Concentrated Race-Conscious Work in the Black Community
Capitalist Imperialism and the Need to Break Down Exclusion Walls of White Workers
The International Colored Unity League
Struggle Against White Supremacy is Central
Insights from Theodore W. Allen
Early Research and Writings and Pioneering Use of “White Skin Privilege” Concept
Why No Socialism? . . . and The Main Retardant to Working Class Consciousness
The Role of White Supremacy in Three Previous Crises
The Great Depression . . . and the White Supremacist Response
Response to Four Arguments Against and Five “Artful Dodges”
Early 1970s Writings and Strategy
“The Invention of the White Race”
Other Important Contributions in Writings on the Colonial Period
Inventing the “White Race” and Fixing “a perpetual Brand upon Free Negros”
Political Economic Aspects of the Invention of the “White Race”
Racial Oppression and National Oppression
“Racial Slavery” and “Slavery”
Male Supremacy, Gender Oppression, and Laws Affecting the Family
Slavery as Capitalism, Slaveholders as Capitalists, Enslaved as Proletarians
Class-Conscious, Anti-White Supremacist Counter Narrative – Comments on Jordan and Morgan
Not Simply a Social Construct, But a Ruling Class Social Control Formation . . . and Comments on Roediger
The “White Race” and “White Race” Privilege
On the Bifurcation of “Labor History” and “Black History” and on the “National Question”
Later Writings . . . “Toward a Revolution in Labor History”
The Struggle Ahead
Addendum: Background to the Article [How “Daedalus” Handled It”]
NOMINATIONS FOR AWARDS
June 18, 2016, talk on
“Theodore W. Allen and ‘The Invention of the White Race’"
by Jeffrey B. Perry
at "Multiracial Organizing Conference"
on "Organizing Poor and Working Class Whites:
The Challenge of Building a Multiracial Movement"
Cornel West on Hubert Harrison, Thomas Paine, and Jeffrey B. Perry
on Hubert Harrison, Theodore W. Allen
and the "white race" as a ruling class social control formation.
Interview conducted by Ingemar Smith at Morehouse College, March 4, 2010.