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Lecture 1 July 4.docx

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University of Toronto St. George

SOC367H1S – Race, Class, Gender Lecture 1 – July 4, 2011 - Group exercise o Identifiers- spontaneous? Influenced by social factors? Conscious or unconscious choices… - Privilege walk o Adapted from the New Conversations Activity developed by Dinushika Mohottige o Consciousness-raising around personal privilege associated with race, ethnicity, class, ability, religion and sexual orientation o Demonstrates:  How social identifiers (outside of individual control) affect privilege/rights  Conferred/unearned nature of privilege/dominance  Corollary aspect of disadvantage for some is (unrecognized) advantage for others o Share life experience with strangers, 50 statements, take step forward/backward- outside factors influence our social reality – patterns… see structural patterns even with small group… understand how privilege conferred and unearned RACE, CLASS, AND GENDER IN SOCIETY Objective: - Sociological approaches to race, class and gender emphasize: o Nurture rather than nature  “one is not born a woman, one becomes a woman.” (Simone de Beauvoir)  Words performed in feminine ways, sex and gender not necessarily fixed together, gendered expectation – that leads women to think of becoming a woman o Connections between micro and macro systems in society  Macro: institutional level patterning, global, historical  Micro: individual level patterning  Is nation state reflected in the family? o Complicating discourses of meritocracy and individual choice/determination  Working hard, get ahead  The American Dream- how does it condition how we feel about ourselves? o Intersectionality and the interlocking nature of social categories Intersectional/Interlocking Nature of Oppression “It is not our project to determine whether gender, race, ethnicity, class or the economic system is the primary source of our oppression. The task is for us to discover how sexism and other forms of gender oppression (i.e. Compulsory heterosexuality), racism, and class oppression are constituted in different historical conjectures so that the dominant groups maintain their hegemony over the means of production and reproduction.” (Ng, 1993: 12) - We need to understand race, class and gender as interlocking- let us not divorce them! They will fit in a unique way according to individual perceptions. When you enter race, differentiation with racial privilege - Historical conjectures- peoples access to means of production and reproduction (Marx) – capitalism and economic epochs before capitalism – Ng is saying pay attention to the historical economic moment and how does that produce particular subjects that are race class and gendered and what is peoples access to material wealth – you would be able to see who is dominant and marginalized- and can understand in historically specific way “We must recognize the interplay of privilege and alterity by acknowledging that power flows in more than one direction so that the oppressed can also be the oppressor and the victim the victimizer, depending on the particular site of power (I.e., race, gender, class, sexuality, religion) one considers…Scripts of relationality are particularly useful in mapping the shifting and contradictory nature of intersectional identifies and power arising out of transnationalism- the movement of capital, people, information, technology, culture and ideology that has increased dramatically over the last three decades” (Staisulis, 1999: 41) – Intersectional and interlocking – pretty much similar, both say do not divorce race, class and gender from one another, understand they are constituting different unique realities for people - Scripts: oppressor, oppressed- “Just as … women’s lives are shaped by their gender, and both heterosexual and lesbian women’s experiences in the world are marked by their sexuality, white (men) and (men) of colou
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