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Essay on Feminist Sociological Theory: What is Intersectionality?

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1. Intersectionality is a feminist sociological theory. According to Tomlinson (17, March, 2014). It is the study of the interactions of multiple systems of oppression or discrimination affecting marginalized groups. In 1989, the term “intersectionality” was coined by a person named Kimberlé Crenshaw. The term is particularly prevalent in black feminism, which argues that the experience of being a black female cannot simply be understood in terms of being black and of being female, considered independently, but must include the interactions, which frequently reinforce each other.
The theory suggests that, and seeks to examine how, various biological, social and cultural categories such as race, gender, ability, sexual orientation, class, species, and other axes of identity interact on multiple and often simultaneous levels, contributing to systematic injustice and social inequality. Intersectionality is a significant model for sociology but challenges occur because too many intricacies are involved in making several aspects of forming different concepts that explain the way in which socially constructed categories of differentiation interact to create a social hierarchy (Tomlinson, 7 March, 2014). For example, intersectionality holds that knowing a woman lives in a sexist society is insufficient information to describe her experience; instead, it is also necessary to know her race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, class, etc., as well as society's attitude toward each of these in order to fully understand her position within society. The expansion of intersectionality initially started to look primarily at the oppression of women within society. However, over the years sociologists apply the theory to all people and to many differen...


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...acles within the economic, political, and social spheres, both private and public. In addition is has brought challenges to the forefront of how to properly study Intersectionality, as it is a field that is both multi-dimensional and multi-departmental.
In the YouTube video by Tiona M. we can see that the lady being interviewed, Leah is talking about her identity and what it’s like realizing that she’s a woman, and that she’s black. She talks about how in her circles, when other woman are talking about being discriminated against, she noticed that most of them were white. This led her to think how they would know what she’s experiencing because they’re not getting the intersecting of being both black and of being a woman (Tiona, August 21, 2007). This is basically what intersectionality is, the relating of two or more different aspects and concepts coming together.



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