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Intersectional intersectionality? Interpretative politics in metacommentaries on intersectionality
Örebro universitet, Institutionen för humaniora, utbildnings- och samhällsvetenskap.ORCID-id: 0000-0003-3268-5852
2021 (Engelska)Doktorsavhandling, monografi (Övrigt vetenskapligt)
Abstract [en]

The claim that intersectionality has become a dominant paradigm for feminist scholarship and activism constitutes the backdrop to this study. One central arena for making such claims is the genre of metacommentaries on intersectionality. This genre often responds critically to the development of intersectionality into a paradigm and focuses on how the dispersal of intersectionality into ever-new contexts carries with it a series of missteps and breakdowns. The paradigmatisation of intersectionality is seen as problematic: its successes lead to failures; its popularity to a loss of radical edge; its travels to uprooting. This critique instigates a form of storytelling that attempts to bring intersectionality back to where it belongs. In this study, three responses to the paradigmatisation of intersectionality are identified. All work to pin it down and shape it as a proper object: to define its meanings, connect with its roots and realise its potential. These responses are read as themselves contributing to paradigmatisation, positioning the genre of metacommentaries as both “against” and as an important part of this process.

This thesis develops a critique of the gestures of correction inherent in the metacommentary responses. A central finding is that the construction of a proper form of intersectionality is contrasted against an improper other, known as “additivity”, a way of conceptualising the relationship between social categories as separate and independent, making it possible to add them to each other. More importantly, additivity serves as a conceptual placeholder for a long list of methodological no-go areas, such as essentialism, exclusion and binary thinking. Thus, in the metacommentaries, a starkly oppositional relationship is constructed: through making additivity into a pejorative, intersectionality becomes an imperative. A paradoxical effect of overstating this binary is that it reinforces the very theory/practice gap that is singled out as causing missteps and breakdowns in intersectional scholarship. Instead of struggling to resolve the problem of additivity at a metatheoretical level, it is suggested that we need to dissolve the exceptionalism that guides the corrective impulse and to acknowledge our collective implication in additive modes of thought.

Ort, förlag, år, upplaga, sidor
Örebro: Örebro University , 2021. , s. 181
Serie
Örebro Studies in Gender Research ; 6
Nyckelord [en]
Feminist theory, intersectionality, additivity, paradigm, storytelling
Nationell ämneskategori
Genusstudier
Identifikatorer
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-92623ISBN: 978-91-7529-400-1 (tryckt)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-92623DiVA, id: diva2:1572673
Disputation
2021-10-08, Örebro universitet, Forumhuset, Hörsal F, Fakultetsgatan 1, Örebro, 13:15 (Engelska)
Opponent
Handledare
Tillgänglig från: 2021-06-24 Skapad: 2021-06-24 Senast uppdaterad: 2021-10-13Bibliografiskt granskad

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Hoffart, Amund Rake
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Institutionen för humaniora, utbildnings- och samhällsvetenskap
Genusstudier

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