Re: Is racism worse than sexism? Your choice of evils

Michelle B. Golden (mgolden@UNIX.CC.EMORY.EDU)
Tue, 3 Jan 1995 16:40:02 -0500

Hello, all.

This argument (which is "worse", racism or sexism) is IMHO not at all useful
for many many reasons.

One of the most obvious (to me) is that it sets up a false dichotomy
between "women" and "people of color." Brings to mind the eloquent title
of the Smith, Hull and Scott anthology, _All the Women Are White, All the
Blacks Are Men, But Some of Us Are Brave: Black Women's Studies._

Instead of ignoring the existence of people at the intersection of both
racism and sexism while arguing over which is worse, maybe we should be
trying to uncover and articulate the connections between these and other
forms of oppression. (as I'm writing this, I'm thinking, I can't BELIEVE that
this argument is even taking place! Don't we who are concerned with these
issues have better uses for our time than arguing over this stuff?)

Can we, as anthropologists, see any relevance in the pattern of this
discussion (from concern with sexist language to this argument)? I've
been on vacation, so I'm sure I missed a lot of this, but I wonder if it
is more comfortable for us to read about this racism vs. sexism
argument than to be constructively challenged on either or both issues.


Michelle (