Intersectionality theory awakens discourse on whether feminism is a universal whole, or a multi-layered facet. Indeed, as much as there is a lot of commonality in the feminist movement, the different aspects of ‘difference’ experienced by women, like race, ability, etc cannot be overemphasized. These aspects of difference call for a reexamination on the means of furthering the feminism cause. Should intersectionality of feminism include the many axes of life affecting women like the fight for minimum wage or homosexuality debates?
Carastathis argues that, “a productive alternative is theorizing the subjective conditions necessary for enacting a feminist politics of solidarity” (Carasthasis p.29).
She advocates that instead of focusing on differences, feminists should pursue politics of solidarity (27). In summary Carastathis purports that the models of intersectionality are self-defeating, removing the focus from the feminism cause. Collins Hill, on the other hand, examines the standpoint theory and how it relates to the African-American women’s struggle. In the standpoint theory, commonality informed the identity of a group and differences could only be expressed within the boundaries of that group (Collins, 202). Just like Carasthasis, Collins uses the case of the African-American and Black Women to emphasize the importance of seeking collective solutions to women problems as opposed to individualized strategies (202). Spade goes a little beyond just looking at intersectionality and whether it is right or wrong; he examines “how intersectional analysis leads to the production of such demands and discusses how law reform tactics shift” (Spade, 1032).
Indeed, from the above discourse, it is notable that intersectionality is a crucial factor in feminism discourse and issues. Due to the diversity in women populations and the multi-faceted needs in feminism, intersectionality is crucial in identifying with the different aspects of the group and individuals and as a whole. Particular sectional needs like homosexuality rights or minimum wage for women, should be appreciated individually and advocated for in solidarity.
Carastathis, Anna. 'The Invisibility of Privilege: A Critique of Intersectional Models of Identity'. A Multidisciplinary Journal on the Normative Challenges of Public Policies and Social Practice 3.2 (2008): 23-38. Print.
Collins, Patricia. 'Some Group Matters Intersectionality, Situated Standpoints, and Black Feminist Thought'. A Companion to African-American Philosophy. Tommy Lott and John Pittman. 1st ed. Minneapolis: Blackwell Publishing, 2007. 201-212. Print
Spade, Dean. 'Intersectional Resistance and Law Reform'. Signs 38.4 (2013): 1031-1055. Web.