Intersectionality

intersectionality

Now what is intersectionality?

Because I felt Wiki’s definition was lacking, here is Geek Feminism Wiki’s definition:  “Intersectionality is a concept often used in critical theories to describe the ways in which oppressive institutions (racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism, xenophobia, classism, etc.) are interconnected and cannot be examined separately from one another. Third Wave Feminism, especially, thrived on the concept of intersectionality in order to redefine Feminism as inclusive.”

So what does that mean?

It means that while white females only earn 77 cents for every dollar white males earn, Hispanic females only earned 83 cents to every dollar a white worker earns.  African American women make 85 cents to the dollar.

For people who don’t identify as “straight,” making a family is a challenge in and of itself.  While studies show that children raised by at least one gay parent are not only NOT at a disadvantage, but they report feeling more tolerant and open-minded and “less stymied by gender stereotypes” than children raised in “straight households.”

Oh, and we still have that beauty thing.  Love it or hate it, there have only been 10  non-white women to win the title of Miss America–a beauty pageant, at its core.  The Clark Doll Experiment showed internalized racism in 1940, but it was recreated in 2006 and showed the same results:  15 out of 21 children thought the white dolls were “pretty” or “good.”

Study after study shows that Native American women and Alaskan Native females are 2 1/2 times more likely to be sexually assaulted or raped.  That means “1 in 3 Native women will be raped during their lifetime.”  Lesbian and bisexual women are 3 times as likely to be sexually assaulted, compared to a heterosexual woman, and gay men are 15 times more likely to be sexually assaulted, compared to a heterosexual man.

And again, this is only the tip of the iceberg.  Yes, I am a white, middle class, cisgendered, able-bodied, privileged white girl.  I have only experience the world through my own lens.  But I know to talk about one form of oppression is to talk about all forms.

So let’s talk.

Oppression HIerarchy

Additional Resources:

http://www.tumblr.com/tagged/intersectionality

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intersectionality

http://geekfeminism.wikia.com/wiki/Intersectionality

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