The first edition of his book, the author showed that alongside the subtle forms of discrimination typical of the post-Civil Rights era, new powerful ideology of "color-blind racism" has emerged. He documented how beneath the rhetorical maze of contemporary racial discourse lies a full-blown arsenal of arguments, phrases, and stories that whites use to account for and ultimately justify racial inequities.
In this new edition he discusses the future of racial stratification in America that goes beyond the white/black dichotomy. Bonilla-Silva argues that the U.S. is developing a more complex and apparently "plural" racial order that will mimic Latin American patterns of racial stratification. In addition, he addresses a variety of questions from readers of the first edition and has updated the book throughout with new information, data, and references where appropriate.