Black Intersectionalities: A Critique for the 21st Century explores the complex interrelationships between race, gender, and sex as these are conceptualised within contemporary thought. Markers of identity are too often isolated and presented as definitive, then examined and theorised, a process that further naturalises their absoluteness; thus socially generated constructs become socialising categories that assume coercive power. The resulting set of oppositions isolate and delimit: male or female, black or white, straight or gay. A new kind of intervention is needed, an intervention that recognises the validity of the researcher’s own self-reflexivity. Focusing on the way identity is both constructed and constructive, the collection examines the frameworks and practices that deny transgressive possibilities. It seeks to engage in a consciousness raising exercise that documents the damaging nature of assigned social positions and either/or identity constructions. It seeks to progress beyond the socially prescribed categories of race, gender and sex, recognising the need to combine intellectualization and feeling, rationality and affectivity, abstraction and emotion, consciousness and desire. It seeks to develop new types of transdisciplinary frameworks where subjective and political spaces can be universalized while remaining particular, leaving texts open so that identity remains imagined, plural, and continuously shifting. Such an approach restores the complexity of what it means to be human.
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