This video pertains to Kimberlé Crenshaw’s writings about the condition of black women and intersectional feminism and Cathy Cohen’s piece about queer politics.
As mentioned in this video clip (and as we did in class), black women stand at a unique intersection in which they fall into two distinct subsets of minority: black and female. Thusly, the concept of feminism and the feminist movement generally only advocates for one-half of the black woman’s identity. It reminds me of what Crenshaw wrote in her piece about intersectionality: black women are often forced to compromise part of their identity in order to fully participate in a movement or revolution.
In the video, Sheba—one of the interviewees—states that the black feminist movement arose because black women felt that the general feminist movement didn’t adequately represent the black woman. She mentions that the “umbrella encompasses all women, but the movement is where it starts to get different.” Her statement reminds me of the sentiments Cohen shared in her writing about coalitions and deconstructing dominant ideologies. Often times, social movements encompass issues that become either too general or too specific to represent the identities of all of its constituents. Therefore, as speakers within these videos have debated, separation ensues when movements happen. In this case, white feminism is separated from black feminism due to—for lack of a better term—conflicts of interest.
by Yuri Ramocan