The concept of intersectionality is viewed by some as a liberating principle that allows their voice to be heard, whilst for others it creates divisions and hierarchies of victimhood. Is intersectionality the new caste system?
Intersectionality works in theory but not practiceShow moreShow less
The principles of intersectionality are good, but the practice falls short of what is needed to lay the groundwork towards true equality.
Intersectionality is the idea of accounting for discrimination taking into consideration the whole of your identity. This means that broad labels we use to talk about discrimination, such as gender, sexuality, social background, etc. are interlinked and all contribute to each person’s experiences.
But it is not enough to know the theory. How many different labels can we find for discrimination? Furthermore, how we account for all of them and what we can do to give these different groups a voice remains to be defined.
These points have no easy answer. Regardless of how narrow we make our labels, we will still find people falling through the cracks unheard. These people will continue to feel unrepresented, at the bottom of the caste system if you will.
So while the theory should promote equality for all, we still do not have a way to accurately identify and correct discrimination in a wide range of cases.
Intersectionality and raising awareness are a good first step. We need to start somewhere, and acknowledging that there are many things we don’t understand and many factors that need to be accounted for will build on future policies and understanding.