“It took me 14 years to complete ‘Systematic Land Theft'”… – A discussion with Jillian Hishaw

The Book

Systematic Land Theft

About the Author

Jillian Hishaw is an innovative strategist, Founder, and Attorney in the areas of agriculture, food systems and asset protection, she was recently recognized by the Clif Bar Co. as a “Food Industry Changemaker.”

As a philanthropist, she has raised thousands of dollars for charitable food programs and has been interviewed by various academic, newspaper and podcast outlets.

She has a Bachelor’s of Science in Biology from Tuskegee University, an historically Black university along with a Juris Doctorate and a Legal Masters (LL.M) in agricultural law from the University of Arkansas-Fayetteville.

Author interview

Question 1: Pitch your books to use  (maximum of 100 words).  

“Systematic Land Theft” documents the history of land theft in Black and Indigenous communities highlighting the ways in which laws and broken treaty agreements led to over 95 percent of U.S. farmland being presently owned by White Americans. Adopting European religious beliefs and customs in the U.S., influenced the Five Civilized Tribes’ ownership of enslaved Africans. The history of the Five Civilized Tribes is highlighted throughout the book. Overall, the book is a well-researched, thought-provoking book that makes the reader think about the history of land tenure in the U.S., while utilizing case studies, interviews with the farmers, legal, and economic analyses as proof. 

Question 2: What inspired you to write your book?  

I wrote the textbook in dedication to my grandfather, who was raised on a farm but due to a dishonest lawyer my family lost ownership of the property.  The book describes the history of how Black and Indigenous people have experienced land theft due to scrupulous tactics supported by English common law. 

Question 3: Who is your book for? 

My book was written to educate the public about the history of land loss not only in the US.  The focus of the first edition is on how the events of European settlement in the US led to massive land theft of Indigenous and Black owned land not only in the US but in Zimbabwe.

Question 4: What do you hope the book will achieve?

I want this book to start a conversation about the disparity of wealth around the world and the need to teach the facts about the history of land and natural resource dispossession of Indigenous and Black owned land.  The book has over 1,200 footnotes so it is truly a resource book.  The accuracy of the book is validated in treaty agreements, regulatory authority, caselaw and more. The book was written in a concise manner so it is not too lengthy and technical.

Question 5: Where can potential readers buy or download your book? 

Readers can purchase the paperback book at www.jillianhishaw.com and at Sankofa Bookstores in Washington DC.  The full text is only available at www.jillianhishaw.com 

Question 6: Are you a first time author or have you written other books you want to tell us about?  

No, I have written other books including “Don’t Bet the Farm on Medicaid” which teaches home and landowners how to protect their land from a government lien as they age and have to relocate to a nursing or long-term care facility. Here in the US, if you owe an outstanding debt to the nursing home you live in and you are listed as an owner on a property deed, the government can take possession of your property to pay off the debt you owe to the nursing home.  It is important that elders who are property owners transfer ownership to a loved one or into an irrevocable trust. 

Question 7: Who is/are your favourite authors of all time? 

Arnold Rampersad, is one of my favorite authors.

Question 8: Writing a book is a significant achievement. Do you have any tips for people who may want to write a book?  

It took me 14 years to complete “Systematic Land Theft” but it took years of work experience to bring it to its full completion. Writing a book requires a lot of patience with yourself so don’t get discouraged if you don’t meet a self imposed deadline just write through the process and you will complete it.  

Question 9: Are you working on another project people should look out for in the future?   

Yes, I just created an e-course for the Systematic Land Theft book and a short audio course for the “Don’t Bet the Farm on Medicaid” book.  Additionally, the new release of the Fourth Edition of the “Don’t Bet the Farm on Medicaid” book was just released and can only be purchased at www.jillianhishaw.com (paperback only)

Question 10: How can a fan of your work connect with you? 

Thanks so much, please subscribe to my newsletter on my site and follow me on Instagram at jillian_hishaw and Facebook at Jillian Hishaw