WGST 202 Day 3 Intersectionality

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  • Many feminists now believe that it is our differences that make us strong. Instead of seeing difference as an obstacle, we must see it as a tool … after all, “difference” is the ONLY thing we all have in common!

Transcript

  • 1. Feminism & Intersectionality Dr. Sara Diaz WGST 202: Gender, Difference, and Power Gonzaga University
  • 2. More on the 2ndWave • 1st Wave movement focused on structural change (suffrage). • 2nd Wave included structural AND cultural change.
  • 3. 2ndWave Agenda • Abortion/Birth Control • Women’s Health Movement • Sexual Liberation • Professional Work • Equality in Education (Title IX) • Equal Rights Amendment (failed) • Egalitarian marriage • Wages for Housework • Welfare Rights (originally intended for white middle class women) • Other Movements: Peace Movement, Civil Rights, New Left, Black/Brown/Red Power movements.
  • 4. Key Terms • Patriarchy/misogyny (cultural and structural) • Consciousness raising (CR) • Separatism (Lesbian) • “Radical” feminism
  • 5. “The Personal is Political” • Second wave slogan • Connects what happens in our own lives to larger political forces. • Conceptualizes politics as something that effects us as individuals.
  • 6. What is Feminism? “Feminism is the political theory and practice to free all women: women of color, working-class women, poor women, physically challenged women, lesbians, old women, as well as white economically privileged heterosexual women. Anything less is not feminism, but merely female self-aggrandizement.” --Barbara Smith
  • 7. Multi-racial Feminism • What is “hegemonic feminism”? • What is “multi-racial feminism?
  • 8. Multi-racial Feminism •What does Becky Thompson want us to understand about the history of the Second Wave? •Why is it important that our feminist histories are accurate?
  • 9. Daily Response Question Why do the members of the Combahee River Collective argue that we must understand oppression as "interlocking"?
  • 10. Intersectionality • Feminist framework • Oppressions, institutions are mutually reinforcing • Racism is reinforced by sexism which is reinforced by classism.
  • 11. Privilege The social positioning of one group over another group that leads to unearned, systematic advantage for those who are privileged and unwarranted systematic disadvantage for those who are subordinate.
  • 12. Intersectionality •We all occupy multiple social locations • Our identities cannot be reduced • Mix of privileged and subjugated positions • Oppressions are not additive • a black woman is not simply twice as oppressed as a white woman
  • 13. Intersectionality • System of Domination • Interlocking, mutually reinforcing • All the “isms” work together • Not all privileges and oppressions are equivalent to each other • “There can be no single-issue politics” – Audre Lorde
  • 14. The problem with “Sisterhood” “Even when there is evidence of female oppression among women of diverse backgrounds, it is important to listen to the individual assessment which each woman makes of her own condition, rather than assume that a synonymous experience of female oppression exists among all women.” --Johnnetta B. Cole
  • 15. Difference: A Tool for Liberation “Certainly there are very real differences between us of race, age, and sex. But it is not those differences between us that are separating us. It is rather our refusal to recognize those differences and to examine the distortions which result from our misnaming them and their effects upon human behavior and expectation.” --Audre Lorde
  • 16. Our Central Questions • Which women, when, and where? • How do systems of oppression/privilege intersect and what are their impacts? • How are our identities constructed by interlocking systems of domination? • How can we work toward feminist social justice?