Paper Title

The Absence of Disability in Intersectional Feminism

Location

Room 221, DiGiorgio Campus Center (DiGs)

Start Date

April 2016

End Date

April 2016

Keywords

feminism, intersectionality, intersectional feminism, ableism, disability, disabilities, feminist, Kimberlé Crenshaw, Kimberle Crenshaw, Crenshaw

Abstract

Intersectionality has been an incredibly important concept to feminism since it was first introduced by Kimberlé Crenshaw in 1989. Crenshaw used the term to describe the experiences of black women, who are often discriminated against based on both their race and their gender simultaneously. Since then, feminists have used intersectionality to point that all people lie at the intersection of multiple social identities—race, gender, social class, religion, etc.—and that each of these identities is inseparable from the others. However, when discussing feminism in an intersectional way, the issue of ableism is often forgotten. According to the Institute on Disability, people with disabilities make up 19% of the population. This would make them the largest minority group in the United States, and yet we rarely, if ever, include them in conversations of intersectionality. I argue that we must put forth an effort to make our discussions as inclusive and accessible as possible to ensure that we do not continue to erase the experiences of people with disabilities. In conclusion, this project, by closely examining feminist literature, sheds new light on the rarely acknowledged issue of the representation of disabled women within the feminist movement.

This document is currently not available here.

Share

COinS
 
Apr 2nd, 9:00 AM Apr 2nd, 10:15 AM

The Absence of Disability in Intersectional Feminism

Room 221, DiGiorgio Campus Center (DiGs)

Intersectionality has been an incredibly important concept to feminism since it was first introduced by Kimberlé Crenshaw in 1989. Crenshaw used the term to describe the experiences of black women, who are often discriminated against based on both their race and their gender simultaneously. Since then, feminists have used intersectionality to point that all people lie at the intersection of multiple social identities—race, gender, social class, religion, etc.—and that each of these identities is inseparable from the others. However, when discussing feminism in an intersectional way, the issue of ableism is often forgotten. According to the Institute on Disability, people with disabilities make up 19% of the population. This would make them the largest minority group in the United States, and yet we rarely, if ever, include them in conversations of intersectionality. I argue that we must put forth an effort to make our discussions as inclusive and accessible as possible to ensure that we do not continue to erase the experiences of people with disabilities. In conclusion, this project, by closely examining feminist literature, sheds new light on the rarely acknowledged issue of the representation of disabled women within the feminist movement.