Birth of a White Nation

  • Jacqueline Battalora Saint Xavier University in Chicago
Keywords: Race, Class, Politics, Privilege, Oppression, White,


There is a specific time, identifiable in law, when a group of humanity called “white people” became a common reference. This keynote Addresses how, when where, and why this category of humanity was created and examines the meanings assigned to the group through U.S. law and policy.

Jacqueline Battalora presented Birth of a White Nation as her keynote address at the 2014 White Privilege Conference (WPC).

Author Biography

Jacqueline Battalora, Saint Xavier University in Chicago

Jacqueline Battalora is an attorney and professor of sociology who works as an anti-racist writer and educator. At Saint Xavier University in Chicago, she teaches courses in law and society, having completed graduate work at Northwester University where her research was shaped by an interest in the social forces that make deep human connections across race “lines” so difficult to sustain. She is the author of Birth of a White Nation: The Invention of White People and its Relevance Today. She speaks widely on the topic of the invention of white people in law and has been conducting white awareness training sessions since the mid 1990s. She has trained undergraduate and graduate students, teachers as well as lawyers, judges, activists, corporate and law enforcement officials on the legal historical record of white privilege and its implications for work conducted today.

Conference Keynote Addresses