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[Xmca-l] Re: NYT Op-Ed: Class Prejudice Resurgent
I resonated to your argument for a race/class
When I was growing up, people who argued about the social injustice of
class inequalities and against the rich becoming richer while the poor
became poorer were at the very minimum ostrascized and in some cases locked
up. There was the triumpheralism of being an "affluent society."
Today the notion of the 1-99 percent gets lots of attention --- and the
congress agrees to make the situation worse.
Little wonder that those whose compound standpoint is from the perspective
of the less powerful seek out third spaces in which to embody alternatives
to vicious inequalities.
On Monday, December 8, 2014, Zavala, Miguel <firstname.lastname@example.org>
> You raise a good question. My sense is that "race" is rendered (in)visible
> because it is visually marked primarily at the level of the body and
> interi-personal relations (both conceptualized as distinct spatial scales).
> In classroom dialogues on institutional racism, it is so difficult for my
> students to come up with a working definition; yet when I ask what is
> race, I get lots of answers akin to what Critical Race Theorists term
> 'micro-aggressions', answers such as racial slurs, racist jokes, and in
> some instances everyday practices that begin to resemble some form of
> institutionalized racism as in police profiling. I say 'begin to
> resemble' because most (but some do) students don't quite have a working
> definition of these practice as systemic and institutionalized (much less
> as manifestations of a racial state [David Theo Goldberg, Charles Mill]).
> So, we work our way through a series of readings and dialogue in trying to
> understand the complexities and invisible dimensions of race (which
> operates at other spatial scales, some so large--historically and
> spatially--that it basically disappears from sight and our naming).
> But I think there is also something in the concrete reality of everyday
> life that renders "class" (in)visible in the U.S. It is not so much the
> issue of our bodies marked as classed beings (although in Latin America, I
> have seen this awareness, how the body, its clothing, use of gold, etc.
> becomes a marker for a particular class location) but of the reality of a
> 'middle class' or the stratification of 'class' in the U.S. People DO see
> differences along 'social class' marked by where people live, what they
> are able to consume, their professions, etc. -- I am not arguing for some
> Weberian model of social class, but am arguing that that is what we
> perceive, the phenomenon. And these differences may not be associated with
> "social class" concept as articulated by Marx.
> I am currently conducting dialogues with teachers on the neoliberal
> privatization of public education. There is yet another challenge, as I
> try to make sense of neoliberalism philosophically and historically: how
> we name "social class" and the discourses that operate in and through
> social class difference. Perhaps what needs to be unpacked is our view of
> the State and its relation to "social class." How we conceptualize the
> State (the working models or metaphors) will shape/color how we see
> "social class". The Liberal model of the state, with rational actors and
> the Individual as its central construct carries with it a kind of metaphor
> where social structures and structural relations tend to disappear (they
> are a type of landscape or spatial container of sorts, in the background,
> with individuals as the active agents foregrounded in this image). And
> there is of course the role of ideology in rendering "social class"
> What I find more challenging is teaching how race and class intersect and
> interlock, creating what Fanon termed a 'compound standpoint', a
> double-articulation, a race-class dialectic. But 'social class' while an
> objective reality, is inseparable from its historical geographies of
> difference. How we see 'social class' will look different from the vantage
> point of people living in abject poverty to folks like many of us, living
> as academics, to those who comprise the 1%. The same goes for "race"; it
> will be experienced and viewed differently based on one's geographic and
> social location. I would argue that Colonialism, from the standpoint of
> Indigenous, Mesitizo, Raza peoples from Latin America needs to be a part
> of our language and register; it needs to be unpacked and made central in
> any cogent understanding of "social class."
> On 12/8/14 8:19 PM, "Annalisa Aguilar" <email@example.com> wrote:
> >I'm having a hard time connecting this to the ground. It is a story,
> >which perhaps has meaning, but I don't see how it connects to American
> >experience. This is not to say that it does or doesn't (in reality), I
> >mean I don't see it. It feels too conspiratorial and planned, and I don't
> >think any single minority group has that much power over others. Who
> >knows? Maybe I'm wrong.
> >I do believe that there was a disconnect in the continuity in historical
> >experience due to the WW II and this is for many reasons, not a single
> >reason. So that's one reason I find it hard to accept a "settlement" as
> >The Explanation for this.
> >My way of thinking about it is that it was a horrific war beyond anything
> >anyone could imagine. There was no way to process this, and the thing
> >most people wanted to do was be happy and get on with life and living. It
> >is understandable.
> >For me it has more to do with our humanity and incapacity to deal with
> >horror and the abject than it has to do with suppressing the reality of
> >class distinctions. It still doesn't explain to me why class is harder to
> >discuss than race.
> >So I offer that to the soup.
> >Kind regards,