Through discourses of gender and race both Du Boiss concept of the Veil and Hirschmannssocial constructions elaborate the tensions of realizing freedom within the context of a white patriarchalsociety. External factors of repression such as the terrors of the Ku-Klux Klan (Du Bois, p.40) and thenon-intervention of law-enforcement in domestic violence cases respectively constrain theopportunities for self-realization and emancipation such as the ideal of book-learning (Du Bois, p. 41)and the space offered by shelters for emotional, psychological and discursive sustenance (Hirschmann,p.135). Battered women, in order to challenge the socially constructed values, institutions and hierarchythat implicitly support the abuser, also must shift their self-understanding and worldview fromvictimhood to purposive empowerment, where they are able, within a protected space, to redefine theirgendered experiences. Similarly, African Americans must overcome their ignorance that is perpetuatedby white hegemony (the Veil) and educate themselves as workers and thinkers towards a commonhuman solidarity. While transcending the Veil to achieve this ideal Du Bois ignores how his educationalmodel reproduces the dominant American class structure within the Black community and internalizesthe higher culture ideology of individualism. Hirschmanns account compellingly resuscitates individualfreedom, especially the fissures between negative and positive liberty, with social constructivism asexternal and inner mediators on choice, but misses out on the social construction of liberty entirely.1.
Ideology and materialitya.
Legal mechanisms that legitimate patriarchal powerb.
Gendered experiences within social support structuresc.
The Veil and ideology2.
External factors and intrapsychical effectsa.
Hirschmann and internalizationi.
Social meaning of men and womenii.
Encoded oppressions within worldviewiii.
Shelter and support prejudicesiv.
Subjectivity and discourseb.
Du Bois and double consciousnessi.
Social meaning of being black and American1.
Outer social responseiii.
Subjectivity and discourse3.
Economic and educational effectsi.
Problem of dependencyii.
Problem of ignorance