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Beth will week 8 intersectionality

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Beth will week 8 intersectionality

  1. 1. INTERSECTIONALITY: MULTIPLE INEQUALITIES IN SOCIAL THEORY Sylvia Walby A presentation by Beth and Will
  2. 2. Intersectionality refers to the interconnectedness of social factors. For example, it considers how certain inequalities are relieved or worsened due to their interaction with other factors.
  3. 3. EXAMPLES OF ‘INTERSECTIONALITY’ Are the particular forms of gender-based violence against women at the intersection of gender inequality, nation, ethnicity and religion (e.g. forced marriage, female genital mutilation, trafficking and ‘honour’ crimes)? Is the gender pay gap best addressed by paying attention to its gender specific aspects, for example through gender pay audits, or by focusing on class- led mechanisms such as the minimum wage?
  4. 4. WHY IS INTERSECTIONALITY SOMETIMES IGNORED? ‘Contemporary feminist and anti-racist discourses have failed to consider intersectional identities such as women of colour’ (Crenshaw, 1991: 1243) ‘Women of colour can be erased by the strategic silences of anti-racism and feminism’ (Crenshaw, 1991: 1253). This is because this may lead to the assumption that gender inequalities are an issue of the minority. E.g – domestic violence occurs more frequently amongst coloured women, if this message was portrayed, it may lead to the view that it is only a minority issue. Another reason why it is ignored is the complexity of studying intersections between different social groups
  5. 5. SIX DILEMMAS IN STUDYING THE INTERSECTIONS- How to address the relationship between structural and political intersectionality without reducing political projects to social structures. - How to conceptualize the intersections so that bringing the agency of the disadvantaged into focus does not leave the actions of the powerful out of sight - How to balance the stability and fluidity of inequalities so they are sufficiently stable as to be available for empirical analysis, while recognizing that they change - How to neither leave class out of focus nor to treat it as of overwhelming importance - How to bring into focus the projects of small minorities, while not making the normative assumption that all projects are equally important. - How to simultaneously identify the intersecting inequalities while recognising that their intersection changes what they are
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