Al Freeman 7/22/17 Extra Credit The article, Mapping the Margins: Intersectionality, Identity Politics, and Violence Against Women of Color, by Karen Crenshaw discusses then race and gender issues surrounding violence against women of color. Crenshaw draws attention to the severity around issues of black women’s experiences of rape and domestic violence getting silenced, overlooked, and misrepresented. There are many political and structural aspects of intersectionality that Crenshaw focuses on within the article, including using an analysis of the violence against women of color to show how important it is to look at these issues through the lens of interconnected races.
Intersectionality has become the latest feminist “buzzword” as it comes to the discussion of pop culture, politics or academia. the article “Intersectionality” by The Washington Post, tells us how the term intersectionality was initially used to describe how race and gender could bisect as the forms of oppression. However, now the term is used to trace how different forms of discrimination overlap and relate. It also describes how important is it for feminists to consider women from diverse backgrounds when advocating for social causes. This term encompasses numerous social factors such as sexual orientation, disability, class and nationality. Recently, this term has been used by social activists either as a rallying cry or punishment for
In “Intersectional Resistance and Law Reform,” Dean Spade proposes that the United States was founded through “racialization…(which) continues to operate under new guises… that produce, manage, and deploy gender categories and sexuality and family norms” (16). More over, these laws and norms tend to maintain the “status quo,” and employ an inherently flawed justice system that is only equipped to address single-axis discrimination issues (5). Thus, the intersectionality movement is largely dismissed by the social and justice systems, as it utilizes “critical intersectional tools… that are often (too) difficult for legal scholars to comprehend” (17). Interstionality’s progress is also impeded by advocates leaving to support single-axis issues. However, Spade warns that this approach is ineffective, as it fails to protect the most marginalized members of society.
Kareen Harboyan English 1C Professor Supekar March 15, 2018 Word Count: Crenshaw’s Mapping the Margins: The Marginalization of Women of Color Analyzed Through Generalization and A Feminist Lens Crenshaw's Mapping the Margins: Intersectionality, Identity Politics, and Violence Against Women of Color expands on the multifaceted struggles of women of color and the generalizations ingrained in society that limit women of color and keep them in a box. In this text, Crenshaw builds on the concept of intersectionality which proposes that social categorizations such as gender and race are intertwined and have great influence on one another.
Similarly, oppression and inequality must first be addressed at an institutional level. Intersectionality is equipped to do just that, as through acknowledging the intersectional “interplay” of gender, sexuality, class, and race, oppression and inequality are reinforced, created and upheld (Mattsson, 2014, p.8). As Mattsson (2014) describes, by understating the complexities of intersexuality in power relations, we can challenge the social structures that create oppression in the first place. It is only through these realizations that the correlations between oppression, institutions, inequalities, power, and suffrage can be recognized and understood, for instance, the disproportionate HIV infection rates among the black female population, as well as the disproportionate domestic and sexual assault indigenous women encounter (Amnesty International, 2009; Logie et al.,
Without applying intersectionality in analysis, oppression can only be understood in general terms, which can cause forms of oppression to become undetected (Mattsson, 2014). Instead, intersectionality, demonstrates the complexity of gender, sexuality, class, and race avoiding stereotypes as a whole, rather than simplifying an individual based on one characteristic (Mattsson, 2014). For example, when I was working at a Community Centre in the Jane and Finch area, I had a conversation with my co-worker. He described the barriers and struggles he has faced because of his race and socioeconomic status. It was through this conversation that I realized the pre-conceived notions my co-worker had about me, as a white individual who did not grow-up in the same neighbourhood.
The predominant ideas put forth in the piece from the Combahee River Collective were those that addressed the shortcomings of the feminist movement to include all women and to address the full range of issues that oppress individuals and groups of people in our patriarchal society. This greatly furthered my ongoing development and understanding of what intersectionality is, what its goals are, and how it can help everyone instead of the predominately white, cisgendered, heterosexual, upper middle class women that composed and continue to compose a large portion of the feminist movement. One of the biggest shortcomings that are addressed in this piece focused on the racism within the feminist movement and its limited or even minimal efforts
Shirley Chisholm, in her address to Congress on May 21, 1969, advocated for women’s rights in juxtaposition to African American’s rights - both predominant issues at the time, because she believed women, unlike African Americans, would continue to be discriminated against and denied equal rights even after racial inequality was adequately addressed, a topic she felt passionately about. To explain, in her speech, Chisholm reflects upon the fact that although prejudice against African Americans is still a point of controversy among American society, it is slowly beginning to recede and become resolved as people express their stance on racial equality and commensurateness. On the other hand, preconceptions and enmity towards women is still socially
Crenshaw (1989, 1993) argued that race and gender are not mutually exclusive social identities that a Black woman experiences, the intersection of race and sexuality go accordantly with each other. Similarly, hooks argued that they are equally congruent values to the lives of those affected by such identities (2000). Crenshaw (1989) criticized the feminist movement for its failure to consider and promote the voices of women in the margins; the women who occupy more than one oppressed space and hold more than one oppressed status because of their race, sexuality, class, as well as gender. She noted, in “mapping the margins,” as did hooks, that some women are so oppressed in ways other than their gender that they do not see the feminist movement
It is impossible to discuss gender and the influences it has on one livelihood without acknowledging the other aspects of one’s identity. Other aspects such as race, class, and sexuality in combination with will always play a major role in one’s life choices and the way they are perceived by others. The term intersectionality as stated by Susanne Hochreiter offers a way to understand the multiple grounds of identity when considering how the social world is constructed. Intersectionality explains why gender cannot be in isolation from other inequalities in the social world. As a black Haitian woman raised in America, it is clear to see that my identity occupies several spheres.
Intersectionality is described by Davis as “the interaction between gender, race, and other categories of difference in individual lives, social practices, institutional arrangements and cultural ideologies and the outcomes of these interactions in terms of power”(p. 456, Davis). In relation to inequality and intersectionality, Browne and Misra discuss the anti-categorical approach which explains how by placing people in categories of race, class, and gender, we are only perpetuating inequality by continuing to acknowledge our differences. These categories are inherently intersectional, with race being gendered and “classed”, and gender being “raced” and classed”. (p. 468, Browne, Misra) In conclusion, race, gender, and intersectionality play a major role in understanding inequality.
In the article The Politics of Black Women’s Studies by Akasha Hull and Barbara Smith, Hull and Smith studiously literate the politics and controversy around the fundamentals of black women’s studies in the past and modern day. Furthermore, the ideology of the article falls under the premise that racism and prejudice are still current and prominent factors that affect the development of black women’s studies in the way it is taught in universities, and the role it takes upon the lives of black women. To begin, it is evident that the premise of the article is solely based on the pros and cons that derive from black women attempting to exist in a white man’s world by making a name for themselves in society. Hull and Smith state that “the necessity
The author uses a variety of other works to support this analysis of dynamics of race, masculinity and power. However, in referencing newspaper articles, the author admits that these tactics effectively shifted the conversation of the female involvement in civil rights activities and addresses how the bias
One of the most outstanding figures of the Black Feminism, Anna Julia Cooper, fought irresistibly for the black women`s rights. Because of her stance, she was often called “the voice of the South” (Rosser-Mims, 2010). She argued that a black woman “is confronted by both a woman question and a race problem, and is as yet an unknown or an unacknowledged factor in both” (Cooper, 1969). African American women have to struggle with discrimination against their race and, at the same time, they have to fight for recognition in their workplaces where leadership positions are usually occupied by men. Cooper wanted to prove that women can succeed in every spheres of life and should be treated equally with men.