Demarginalizing the Intersection of Race and Sex: A Black Feminist Critique of Antidiscrimination Doctrine, Feminist Theory, and Antiracist Politics
This chapter develops a Black feminist criticism because it sets forth a problematic consequence of the tendency to treat race and gender as mutually exclusive categories of experience and analysis. It examines how this tendency is perpetuated by a single-axis framework that is dominant in antidiscrimination law and that is also reflected in feminist theory and antiracist politics. The chapter suggests that the single-axis framework erases Black women in the conceptualization, identification and remediation of race and sex discrimination by limiting inquiry to the experiences of otherwise-privileged members of the group. DeGraffenreid, Moore and Travenol are doctrinal manifestations of a common political and theoretical approach to discrimination which operates to marginalize Black women. The value of feminist theory to Black women is diminished because it evolves from a white racial context that is seldom acknowledged.