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Gender: Do not display
Hometown: Saskatchewan
Home country: Canada
Member since: Sat Jul 9, 2005, 11:46 PM
Number of posts: 20,582

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Dear Admins ....

I am posting to reiterate a request made by justiceischeap in H&M:

http://www.democraticunderground.com/124029420#post269 for the creation of a Feminism & Diversity Group.

There has been obvious interest in the creation of this group, with many more than the 10 necessary votes of support. The original thread has gotten quite long, and the message perhaps lost in some of the misunderstandings contained in it.

"Looking for a Group that expands on traditional definitions of feminism? We are seeking people interested in intersectionality--the 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. Intersectionality was developed as part of post-second wave feminist philosophy, including third wave feminism, in an effort to bring a wider and more inclusive focus to Feminism. We want to offer a safe haven that allows issues surrounding race, gender, orientation and class be the forefront of feminist discussion."

Anna Carastathis posted something that helped me to understand the need for consideration of the various forms of oppression from an intersectional viewpoint:


"So, to sum up.

We all have intersectional identities that are shaped through systems of power relations, and through experiences of oppression.

If feminism is to be a truly liberatory politics seeking the freedom of all oppressed people, it has to recognize this important insight: that “I am not free while any woman is unfree, even when her shackles are very different from my own” – that I am not free as long as any oppressed person remains chained.
Privileged white feminists involved in the feminist movements in US and Canada failed to realize this, and instead continually overgeneralized their own specific experience as the experience of all women.

They fell prey to “divide and conquer” strategies that distracted them from realizing what is the real source of their oppression, and how the privileges they are granted in virtue of their race, class, heterosexuality and national status, are based on the oppression of other women.
Intersectionality helps us to understand how gender, class, race, and other factors in our experience fit together. It helps us come up with better feminist politics that seek the emancipation of all people – not just an élite minority of privileged women.

It helps us understand that some problems we share as women and girls, and others we don’t share. But what we all share as oppressed people is a common enemy: a shared oppressor.

Intersectional approaches to feminist theorizing and activism can help us overcome the “Oppression Olympics” problem and the problem of having to focus on one aspect of one’s identity at the expense of ignoring another."

This request, as was stated in the original thread requesting the group, would in no way take away from the valuable and necessary purpose of any existing group. Personally, I enjoy reading them all, but I don't necessarily feel that I 'fit' in any of them. I think it could be an interesting and educational opportunity to allow all ... Feminists, LGTB, those from the Men's Group, Women's Issues ... to come together and be able to discuss certain topics we all care about in a less restrictive (I don't mean restrictive as a negative here, I completely respect that every group needs the safety of its own existing SOP) ... perhaps, 'more inclusive' environment.

Thank you for your consideration.
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