“We’re all just different!” How Intersectionality is Being Colonized by White People

Thinking Race...


Working in student affairs on a university campus, I feel like I hear the words “intersectionality” or “intersectional” said out loud at least 20 times a day (no exaggeration). The word is regularly used as a powerful critique from young women of Color about how White feminist staff members don’t seem to understand the violence we enact. Often, though, I hear the term used by White feminist or “social justice focused” staff such as myself.

We use the term in many vague ways. “We really need to be sure our work is intersectional…We need to be more intersectional in how we talk about student identities…Our teaching strategies must be intersectional and culturally responsive.” I don’t use “we” in the royal sense. This is something I do all the time without thinking critically about my meaning.

But what the hell are we even saying when we use the term?

We have…

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Three Things White People’s Love for Get Out Says About the White (Sub)Conscious

Thinking Race...

GetOut1Spoiler Alert – I’m definitely going to be ruining some important details from Jordan Peele’s Get Out if you read this without having seen the film.

We liberal White folks sure do LOVE Jordan Peele’s smash hit Get Out. In a recent conversation with friends, one White person remarked that it’s a “genius use of fiction” that highlights the realities of White liberal racism.

And that’s true. But in the context of the brutal history of Whiteness, the plot of Get Out is not exactly a far fetched idea (for more on the construction and history of Whiteness, see the work of Battalora, Du Bois, Leonardo, Painter, and Rodeiger). And I wonder to what degree that is lost of us as White people as we flock to see the film.

After all, the film depicts a particular type of violence committed by White people…

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