Emerging Intersections: Race, Class, and Gender in Theory, Policy, and Practice

Emerging Intersections: Race, Class, and Gender in Theory, Policy, and Practice

Emerging Intersections: Race, Class, and Gender in Theory, Policy, and Practice

Emerging Intersections: Race, Class, and Gender in Theory, Policy, and Practice

Synopsis

The United States is known as a "melting pot" yet this mix tends to be volatile and contributes to a long history of oppression, racism, and bigotry.

Emerging Intersections, an anthology of ten previously unpublished essays, looks at the problems of inequality and oppression from new angles and promotes intersectionality as an interpretive tool that can be utilized to better understand the ways in which race, class, gender, ethnicity, and other dimensions of difference shape our lives today. The book showcases innovative contributions that expand our understanding of how inequality affects people of color, demonstrates the ways public policies reinforce existing systems of inequality, and shows how research and teaching using an intersectional perspective compels scholars to become agents of change within institutions. By offering practical applications for using intersectional knowledge, Emerging Intersections will help bring us one step closer to achieving positive institutional change and social justice.

Excerpt

As thinkers and practitioners, Bonnie Thornton Dill and Ruth E. Zambrana have been actively engaged in nurturing intersectionality since its inception. For Dill and Zambrana, intersectionality constitutes “an innovative and emerging field of study that provides a critical analytic lens to interrogate racial, ethnic, class, ability, age, sexuality, and gender disparities and to contest existing ways of looking at these structures of inequality, transforming knowledges as well as the social institutions in which they have found themselves.” This expansive definition, one that links knowledge and power, research and policy, the individual and the collective, captures the spirit of intersectionality as it unfolded in the last three decades of the twentieth century. Unlike scholarly dilettantes who perpetually chase scholarly fads, Dill and Zambrana have been patiently, and some would say heroically, laboring for several decades to develop our understanding of intersectionality as a critical analytic lens that serves social justice. Emerging Intersections encompasses one important project that reflects the larger corpus of their work.

Despite the widespread belief that intersectionality has arrived, I think that it is important to stop and recognize that this way of looking at and living within the world constitutes a new area of inquiry that is still in its infancy. Moreover, because this field remains both staunchly interdisciplinary and committed to claiming the much-neglected space of praxis (one where transforming ideas and institutions inform one another), from its inception intersectionality set a seemingly impossible high bar for itself. Given its high initial aspirations and the way they have played out, Emerging Intersections can serve as an important guidepost to mark the trajectory of intersectional scholarship and practice. This volume can help us look backward in order to interrogate past ideals and practices as well as forward in order to imagine potential directions and future . . .

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