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Jean Ait Belkhir, Race, Gender & Class Journal

Marxism, and Class, Gender, and Race: Rethinking the Trilogy Author(s): Martha E. Gimenez Source: Race, Gender & Class, Vol. 8, No. 2, Marxism: Race, Gender, & Class (2001), pp. 23-33 Published by: Jean Ait Belkhir, Race, Gender & Class Journal Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/41674970 . Accessed: 09/02/2014 17:28
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Race,

Gender S Class: Volume 8, Number2, 2001 (23-33) Race, Gender & Class Website,www.suno.edu/sunorgc

/Marxism, Gender, THINKING

and and THE

Class, /Bice: TklLOGY

Martha E. Gimenez, University of Colorado

Sociology at Boulder

ofMarxism ofcritical assessments thesoundness Abstract:Thispaperexamines are MarxandMarxism theviewthat as an unassailable which conclusion, present, between of the connections of littleuse forthe study class, genderand race. to the prevailing view,Marx and Marxismare indeed that, contrary Arguing theauthor between class andidentities, therelationship for elucidating necessary and suggests & Class perspective oftheRace, Gender examinesthelimitations andclassed"interactions all "raced, thenameless that underlying gendered, power needs theRGC perspective andthat, thanclasspower is noneother consequently, name to of terms the endless semantics togo beyond Marxism proliferation (e.g., itsavowedtheoretical andrace) and fulfill between theconnections class,gender and emancipatory objectives. race class,gender, Keywords:Marxism,

of of Sociologyat theUniversity Martha E. Gimenez is AssociateProfessor of Sociology,Campus Bos 327, Colorado at Boulder.Address: Department Universityof Colorado at Boulder Boulder CO 80309. Home page: E-mail: Fax: (303) 492-8878, Ph: (303) 492-7080, http://csf.colorado.edu/martha/ gimenez@csf.colorado.edu

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taken for feature ofmost socialscience granted publications today, is theritual those about ofMarxand especially inequality, critique A Marxismin the processof introducing theoretical alternatives This practice intended to remedy itsalleged"failures." becamepopular in early feminist werecriticized literature: Marxand Marxists fornotdeveloping an inof the of their "class women, "economism," oppression depth analysis and "sex blind"categories of analysis. Soon after it became reductionism," commonplace to assertthatMarxismwas also at faultforneglecting race, theenvironment andpractically that mattered demography, ethnicity, everything tothe"newsocialmovements" in theWest. As themovements died,scholarship informed concerns theenergy that havebeen flourished; bythosepolitical might in thepublicarenafound in academic spent expression programs (e.g., women's racial/ethnic andefforts toincrease in thecurriculum studies, studies) "diversity" and thepopulation of educational institutions. Publication ofthejournalRace, Sex & Class (changed afterwards toRace, Gender & Class), in 1993,signaled the ofthose and intellectual interests intoa newsocialscience convergence political that soon acquiredenormous as demonstrated perspective visibility, by the ofjournalarticles and bookswithrace, genderand class in their proliferation titles. This perspective, butnotexclusively putforth primarily bysocialscientists ofcolor, as a reaction to feminist theories which racial/ethnic emerged neglected and class differences theories of racial/ethnic which amongwomen, inequality as a corrective to neglectedsexism among men of color and, predictably, Marxism's Forexample, Jean editor and founder Belkhir, allegedshortcomings. ofRace, Sex & Class, prefaces an article on thistopicas follows: "The "Failure" Of MarxismTo Develop AdequateTools and A Comprehensive Theoryof Gender andClass Issuesis Undisputable" (Belkhir, 1994:79). The list Ethnicity, ofputative "failures" couldbe as longas we wanted itto be butwhatwouldthat thefact that Marx'sand Engels'political and theoretical prove, beyond priorities differed fromthose of contemporary social scientists? Less biased, albeit "crucial and debatable,is the conclusionthat Marxism,althoughoffering of capitalism, into the operation "needsto developthe unparalleled insights" toolstoinvestigate thestudy ofracism, sexism and classism" (Belkhir, analytical 1994: 79). To refer to class as "classism" the standpoint of Marxist is, from "a deeply formulation" theory, misleading (Eagleton,1996:57; see also Kandal, another 1995:143)becauseclass is notsimply ideology legitimating oppression; itdenotes relations between relations tothe exploitative peoplemediated bytheir meansof production. it is thecase thatneither MarxnorEngels Nevertheless, devoted theintensity ofeffort to theinvestigation ofgender and race (and other wouldhavesatisfied critics. issues)that today's It is (and anyliterature wouldsupport review thispoint)fareasierto their ofcurrent "sins"ofomission and- in light sensibilities emphasize political - commission, thanitis touse their theoretical and methodological contributions totheorize and investigate thoseaspects ofcapitalist socialformations that today concern us. Notableexceptions are Berberoglu the (1994), who has examined class forces togender andracialdivisions in theU.S. working underlying leading and racialoppression to capitalaccumulation, and Kandal class, linking gender and (1995), who has forcefully arguedfortheneed to avoid the racialization

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thesignificance feminization ofsocialconflicts whileminimizing oroverlooking ofclass. In thisessay,I intend theanalytical toarguethat Marxism doescontain ofclass,gender andrace. tools totheorize anddeepen ourunderstanding necessary I intendcritically of Marxisttheory, the to examine,fromthe standpoint forrace, genderand class studiesoffered by some of theirmain arguments in the and limitations and demonstrating, proponents, assessingtheir strengths if the study thatMarxismis theoretically and politically of necessary process, of class, genderand race is to achievemorethanthe endlessdocumentation in very contexts in their relative effects variations salienceandcombined specific and experiences. Race, Gender & Class as a Social Science Perspective the popularization of the Race, Gender& Class (RGC) Long before I suspect socialstratification that most Marxist sociologists teaching perspective, theSectionon werealready For manyyears,forexample, adeptpractitioners. initsannual included Marxist oftheAmerican Association Sociological sociology called mystudents' a sessionon Class, Genderand Race. I certainly program in twenty and other nineyears ofteaching social stratification attention, subjects inwhich that livesareaffected tothefact matters, byclass, inequality everybody's of structures (in additionto age and other sources genderand race/ethnic " "an ensemble ofsocial relations (Marx, inequality).We are,in Marx'sterms, 1994: 100,emphasis added),and we liveourlivesat thecoreoftheintersection interrelated of a number of unequal social relations based on hierarchically modes ofthecapitalist structures define thehistorical which, specificity together, I and reproduction their observable manifestations. ofproduction and underlay inthewidespread inherent alsoroutinely calledstudents' attention totheproblems and ofassuming theexistence ofcommon interests, politics, practice ideologies, raceandethnicity becauseclasslocation, andsociobasedon gender, experiences into economic status within those differences divide classes, population aggregates In turn, classesandstrata with interests. andconflicting contradictory aggregates within thesameclass location, or similar characteristics socio-economic sharing a class, are themselves dividedby gender,race and ethnicity so that it is toassumethat coalesceintoclass or status problematic they might spontaneously in thelatesixties andearly1970s, self-conscious, organized groups.Thisis why, I was critical divisions offeminist theories which class,racialand ethnic ignored and men,and theories thatignored how mostmen ofpatriarchy amongwomen under arerelatively (Gimenez, 1975). Lateron,I published capitalism powerless a critical assessment of the"feminization of poverty" thesisbecauseit was not sensitive totheeffects divisions ofclass,socio-economic racialand ethnic status, of theconnections the poverty between amongmen and women;it neglected women andthepoverty as a ofmenand overlooked ofthisthesis thesignificance indicator oftheimmiseration ofthelower theU.S. working strata within powerful class (Gimenez,1990). I am aware, however, that most sociologists do not take Marxism and thattheorists of genderand racial oppression have been,on the seriously to Marxism's thisis a Moreimportantly, whole,hostile alleged reductionisms. where class is notpartofthecommon senseunderstanding oftheworld country and remains and most absentfrom of politicians thevocabulary conspicuously massmediapundits. Thisis why, the U.S. of labor today struggles, despite history

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in theirsocial and economicgrievances people are morelikelyto understand thanin class terms, rather racialand ethnic terms, despitethefactthat gender, lives. I am notarguingthat dimension of everybody's class is an ineradicable are a form of northat areless important basedgrievances racialand gender they it has in the U.S. historical in thepresent "falseconsciousness;" conjuncture class to articulate becomeincreasingly difficult, notwithstanding, exceptions The ideological from and racial/ethnic grievances. gender separately grievances too well,as have succeeded and political against"classreductionism" struggles and race/ethnic to gender in whatamounts Kandal (1995) pointed out,resulting reductionisms.This situationdoes not indicatethe demise of class as a between of peoples'lives,but thatthe relationship determinant fundamental is more and consciousness class formations structural complex political changes, of Marxismwould suggest. It is an important versions thanwhatsimplistic between to differentiate materialism thatit is necessary of historical principle andtheideological ofeconomic orobjective material (e.g.,legal, change processes etc.) waysin whichpeoplebecomeconsciousof these philosophical, political, and conflictsand fight them out (Marx, of transformations processes oftheRGC perspective I welcomed theemergence [1859]1970:21). This is why andthe about thereality toraiseawareness I thought, itwouldcontribute because, neither racialnorgender towhich ofclass and theextent oppression importance in isolationfromthe realitiesof class exploitation.My can be understood ofclass in theRGC trilogy, thelocation weremisplaced: however, expectations, class is "the thisapproach; within itsrelative at theend,replicates significance theplaceofclass in the weaklinkin thechain"(Kandal,1995:143). Butaltering differences thequalitative erases theRGC perspective not for would matter, trilogy andoppression, an erasure ofinequality sources classandother between grounded nature. in itsessentially atheoretical of it is the "intersections Whatis RGC's objectof study?Essentially, in themetaphors and class" (Collins,1997:74). Authors race,gender they vary ofthese intersections: use todescribe thenature interplay, oppression, e.g.,triple interconnections cumulative effects, (Belkhir,1994); interactive, interrelation, interactive triadicrelation, (Belkhir,1993:4); multiple systems overlapping, but also the , simultaneous oppressions jeopardy,meaning"not only several et al., 1999:14, relations amongthem"(King, citedin Barnett multiplicative ofa inter-connected in thetext);multiplicative, simultaneous, systems emphasis et al., 1999:15). Collins,however, whole (Barnett appearsto disagreewith for she statesthatthey of these relationships, mathematical interpretations one soto produce be "addedtogether and class) cannot (meaningrace,gender called grandoppression" 1999:15); it followsthey (Collins,citedin Barnett, the for either. Collinsviewsarethemost cannot be multiplied identifying helpful ofthisapproach: mainelements of structures and class are "distinctive 1. Race, gender yetinterlocking (Collins,1993:26) oppression" to the macrolevel connections refers 2. "The notionof interlocking suchas race,class and gender" ofoppression (Collins,1997:74). linking systems describesmicrolevel 3. "The notionof intersectionality processesnamely,how each individualand group occupies a social positionwithin interlockingstructuresof oppression described by the metaphor of

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theTrilogy Rethinking (Collins,1997:74). intersectionality"

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4. "Everyone hasa race/gender/class (Collins, 1993:28). identity" specific andoppressor" individual 5. Every is, simultaneously, "being oppressed (Collins,1993:28). norshould we struggle aboutwhich 6. Oppressions should notbe ranked "to theseconnections it is necessary is more fundamental: totheorize oppression betweenoppressions" a working of equivalency (Collins, support hypothesis 1997:74). thatwe ask new questionssuch as, for 7. These perspective requires and structured andsubordination "Howarerelationships ofdomination example, class and How do in theAmerican maintained race, gender political economy? of that function as parallelandinterlocking shapethisbasicrelationship systems and subordination?" domination (Collins,1993:29). in thepreceding evident As Collinsacknowledges is something (andthis todealwith this areaofrace,class and ofmetaphors issue)"the sample attempting withthe complexquestionof how to thinkabout gender studiesstruggles basedon intersections ofsystems ofoppression" (Collins,1997:73). One solution, is to theassumption that race and class are simultaneously experienced, gender, individual not are considerthemas "situatedaccomplishments;" only they with others" in interaction attributes but"something which is accomplished who, within institutional in turn, accountable render theseaccomplishments settings this stance, 1997:64).From (WestandFenstermaker, ethnomethodological people race and class) in the processof "do" difference (i.e., gender, simultaneously tothereproduction with their contribute others and,through "doings," interacting social of those structures.As Collins rightly pointsout, this postmodern, leaves structures to "difference," constructionist that reduces analysis oppressive thatconstitute and material out "thepowerrelations oppression" inequalities for is unsatisfactory other solution (Collins,1997:75). The ethnomethodological reasons as well, which form itsbasicRGC assumptions; follow i.e.,that everyone are has a race,gender, ofall socialinteractions class identity, andthat theeffects 1997: and"classed." "raced," (WestandFenstermaker, simultaneously "gendered," 60). locationTo postulatean isomorphic relationbetweenstructural difference whether makes no location is conceptualized or singly intersectionally - andidentity oridentities similar tothat entails a structural determinism imputed thatall to "orthodox Marxism." Whileit is true, as it could notbe otherwise, members ofstructures ofa givensociety are simultaneously locatedin a number structural and opportunity which, structures, together, shapetheir experiences locationdoes not necessarilyentail awarenessof being thuslocated or the automatic . It cannot to thoselocations development ofidentities corresponding beassumed, that hasa race/gender/class as Collinsargues, then, everyone identity, itis true that at theintersection ofclass, is located though everyone, bydefinition, are and racial/ethnic structures. That mostindividuals in this country gender, morelikely rather to adoptand self-consciously and racial/ethnic display gender but than locations class identities is notan automatic oftheir structural reflection ofslavery, thecombined effect theheritage ofmany factors suchas, for example,

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the presenceof colonized minorities, the composition of past and current the balance of powerbetweenclasses and flows,McCarthysm, immigration characteristics oftheclass struggle ofthe1960s and,lastbutnotleast,theeffects social movements and dominant the limitsof political ideologiesdefining discourse. RGC thinking conflates of objectivelocationin the intersection structures ofinequality andoppression with i.e.,individuals' identities; subjective of who theyreallyare,and thisconflation understanding opensthewayto the solution to"intersectionality," which assumes that ethnomethodological everyone in the courseof social interaction, so that all social deploysthoseidentities are "raced," and "classed" (and thelistcouldgo on; "aged exchanges "gendered," "ethnicized," "nationalitized," etc.). As most institutional arecharacterized structures settings byhierarchical whichdistribute statuses, people in locationsassociatedwithdifferent power, whatever individuals' ofwhothey etc,itis likely that, privilege, conception really are might is routinely in different terms be, theirbehavior interpreted bytheir whoarelocated in positions structure, peersandbythose highin thehierarchical thatgive themthe powerto make decisions affecting otherpeople's lives. Identities are a contested botha product of individuals' terrain, spontaneous, common senseself-understanding andpolitical choices that makesense helpthem oftheir oflabeling from above(e.g., byemployers and existence,and a product ofactsofpower. It is important, bythestate)or bytheir peers;i.e., theeffects todifferentiate between which aretheproduct therefore, identities," "legitimating of dominant institutions and groups, and "resistance whichemerge identities," from thegrassroots is experienced, (Castells,1997). How"intersectionality" then, is itself a thoroughly raisesquestions aboutthepossibility politicalprocessthat thatwhatonce were"resistance whenlinkedto social movements, identities," in timebecome"legitimating whenharnessed identities," might bythestateto narrow boundaries that ruleout other forms ofpolitical selflegal and political understanding. How are we to understand, at the macro level of analysis, the and theplacement of peoplein givenclass and or racialization, genderization socio-economic statuslocations? Are theseand otherstructures of inequality While empirical on these research reproduced simply by "doingdifference"? matters is important to document thepersistence and pervasiveness of gender, thatpermeate class, and race prejudiceand stereotypes ordinary, day to day it demonstrates at the same timethe limited, descriptive, noninteractions, natureof "intersectionality." In thecontext of Marxist the explanatory theory, that ofsocialrelations," is argument peopleare "anensemble meaning everyone locatedat the intersection ofnumerous social structures, counteracts one-sided, ahistorical notions ofhuman nature. As an RGC insight, itis also useful abstract, tocritique dominant which associate with race,andethnicity stereotypes poverty, womenand with"minority" besides status,as if "whites," (i.e., "non-white") of therelatively were (ethnicity having"culture" beingtheculture powerless) mostlyrich and male. But this insight,capturedin the metaphorof and havingas a referent themultiple locations ofindividuals "intersectionality" in thestructures that makeup thesocialformation as a whole,allowsus onlya) tomapthedistribution ofthepopulation in thesemanifold locations where most individuals where dominant and i.e., locations locations; occupy "contradictory" subordinate relations intersect 1978); and b) to investigate (Wright, empirically theextent to whichlocations and identities coincideor not,and thepatterns of

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and mis-recognition thatensue. A graphic of severalof recognition depiction and couplesin theintersection theseintersections, ofwealth placingindividuals income levels, occupations,gender,race, ethnicity,age and ownership, status is thewell known"American Profile Poster" employment accompanying of U.S. social stratification Rose's periodic description (Rose, 1992). A howthorough, hasmeaning nomatter within a specific however, only description, in itself, as an account ofthemultiplicity context. of theoretical Intersectionality or as a studyof the patterned individualsexperiences, locationseffecting claim forthemselves of those in theidentities individuals variations regardless or their thesources ofinequalities locations,cannot reproduction explaineither bases of power mustbe placed in the "institutional overtime;intersectionality race,class and gender" (Collins,1997:74). Whatare theseinstitutional shaping toits them? Howdo we linkintersectionality basesofpower?Howdo we identify those structures ofpossibility, ofoppression? macro level conditions "interlocking" runsinto a theoretical dead end whichthe It is herethattheRGC perspective hidenor abundance ofmetaphors etc.)canneither intersecting, (e.g.,interlocking, ofa "basicrelationship ofdomination theexistence Collinspostulates overcome. which is "shaped" within theAmerican and subordination" by economy political classandgender the"race, (Collins,1993:29). RGC studies, system" interlocking ofexisting the"analysis and criticism and Collinspoint as Andersen out,require and Collins,1995:xiii). Whilethey ofpowerand privilege" (Andersen systems of unequal or "basic" structure of a morefundamental theexistence postulate and class, no macro whichunderlies and privilege race,gender powerrelations this basic, fundamental to identify is offered level theoretical perspective becomes nature oftheRGC perspective that theformal Itis atthis structures. point takenfor forall practical and class have become, clear:race,gender purposes, in all invariant whosemeaning remains ofanalysis apparently categories granted ofrace, theories Therearemany andcontexts. frameworks theoretical competing class, American economy, power,etc. butno specific political society, gender, and class are used,or to howtheterms is invoked to define race,gender theory To someextent, ofthesocialsystem. arerelated totherest howthey race, identify and interlockings havebecomea mantra intersections and class and their gender abouttheir for a tacit in anyandall theoretical tobe invoked contexts, agreement studies RGC have seems to and developed among meaning ubiquitousness to document their to be done is empirically so thatall thatremains advocates, thathappensis, by definition, foreverything intersections raced, everywhere, and class, as ofrace,gender classed,and gendered.This pragmatic acceptance to experience as the and theresort oftheory, in thedownplaying results givens, of source of knowledge.The emphasison experiencein the construction the reflect totheories as a corrective is intended that, presumably, only knowledge of a subjectivist RGC seemsto offer ofthepowerful. understanding experience oftheindividual oftheexperience andconsciousness a reflection as simply theory and which is collectively ratherthan as a body of propositions theorist, ofpossibility which conditions under historically specific produced systematically foras long as thoseconditions themhistorical prevail.Instead, validity grant of orreflection as theproducts conceived arepragmatically andtheory knowledge and relative so that as such, and, accuracy greater unavoidably partial, experience the experiential can be approximated gathering only through completeness in Such is theimportance ofall groups. accounts givento theroleofexperience tothefirst section intheeight that ofknowledge theproduction pageintroduction six times is repeated theword ofan RGC anthology, (Andersen thirty experience and Collins,1995:1-9).

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I agreewith theimportance oflearning from theexperience ofall groups, thosewhohavebeensilenced and exclusion and bythe especially byoppression that effects ofideologies their actual conditions To learn ofexistence. how mystify their oftheir livesis very for "ideas peopledescribe understanding illuminating, - real or illusory - of (our) actual relations are theconsciousexpression and activities" determines consciousness" (Marx,1994:111),because"socialexistence ourexistence is shapedbythecapitalist modeof (Marx,1994: 211). Giventhat to be fully in itsbroader understood social and political production, experience, has tobe situated in thecontext ofthecapitalist forces andrelations implications, thatproduce it. Experience in itself, is suspectbecause,dialectically, however, it is a unity ofopposites; itis, at thesametime, and unique, personal, insightful itself the and,at thesametime, social,partial, revealing thoroughly mystifying, historical of forces about which individuals know little or product may nothing about(for a critical assessment as a source ofexperience ofknowledge see Sherry "Contradictions of feminist in Chow,Wilkinson, and Gorelick, methodology," Baca Zinn,1996; applicable in contemporary to theroleofexperience RGC and feminist research is Jacoby's ofthe1960spolitics ofsubjectivity: critique Jacoby, itis through 1973:37-49). Giventheemancipatory goalsoftheRGC perspective, theanalytical toolsofMarxist that itcanmove theimpasse forward, theory beyond the constant reiteration revealed of variations on the by "interlocking" metaphor. This wouldrequire, and modification ofthepostulated however, a) a rethinking between and b) a reconsideration of the race,class and gender, relationships notion is located at theintersection all becauseeveryone ofthesestructures, that, and interactions and "gendered." are "raced," socialrelations "classed," In the RGC perspective, as race, genderand class are presented of oppression withextremely forthe equivalent systems negative consequences that Itis also asserted thetheorization oftheconnections between these oppressed. "a of (Collins, 1997:74). systems require working hypothesis equivalency" or notit is possibleto viewclass as just another Whether of oppression system within classis defined. Ifdefined within the onthetheoretical framework depends in termsof a gradation traditional sociologyof stratification perspective, ranked on the class refers to strata or population perspective, simply aggregates and education)(foran basis of standard SES indicators (income,occupation, andrelational ofthedifference between excellent discussion concepts gradational sensehas ofclass,see Ossowski, 1963). Class in thisnon-relational, descriptive itsimply than orracialoppression; no claimstobeingmore fundamental gender within an aggregate refers tothesetofindividual attributes that placeindividuals defined data and or strata (i.e., dependingon their bytheresearcher arbitrarily researchpurposes,anywhere fromthreeor fourto twelve"classes" can be identified). class is qualitatively of Marxist Fromthestandpoint however, theory, of and raceand cannot be considered different from system just another gender areunremittingly racism andsexism As Eagleton whereas out, points oppression. a "badthing" eventhough socialists wouldliketoabolish bad,classis notentirely a new in ushering it. The bourgeoisie in itsrevolutionary stagewas instrumental one whichliberated theaveragepersonfrom the era in historical development, theidealsofliberty, andfraternity. offeudalism andputforth equality oppressions ithas an unquestionably roletoplayas itexpandsand Today,however, negative theruleofcapitalovertheentire The class,on theother deepens globe. working hand, is pivotallylocated to wage the final struggle against capital and,

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it is "an excellent thing" (Eagleton,1996:57). While racismand consequently, of a unity class relations sexismhave no redeeming are, dialectically, feature, a sitewhere thepotential and,objectively, opposites;botha siteofexploitation class is the agentsof social change are forged. To argue thatthe working that itis theonlyagentof thenotion fundamental agentofchangedoesnotentail andmenwhobelong ofwomen classis ofcourse composed change.The working so that and so forth, nationalorigins, to different cultures, races,ethnicities, of class have the racial/ethnic and struggles potential fueling struggles gender in this and incomedistribution ofwealth because,giventhepatterns ownership of genderand racial thosewho raise thebanners and all capitalist countries, ofthe members are overwhelmingly workers, technically propertyless struggles itis for a whether survival for economic class,peoplewhoneedtowork working But this matter. and class sexism whom for or a racism, exploitation salary, wage are not and racial struggles class wheregender visionof a mobilized working to link RGC effort a class conscious related butarenevertheless subsumed requires ofhistorical studiesto theMarxist change. In so faras the"class" in analysis a neutral RGC remains meanings, justone concept, opentoanyandall theoretical its will not realize ali intersection others, revolutionary ty among oppression potential. I wantto argue againstthenotionthatclass shouldbe Nevertheless, not for thegrounds andrace. I find to considered myargument equivalent gender ofepochalchange but playin processes onlyon thecrucialroleclass struggles andtheethnomethodological ofRGC studies also inthevery insights assumptions ofthesimultaneity The assumption and Fenstermaker West forth (1994). by put the with areraced, ofexperience classed,gendered) together (i.e., all interactions while one so that interactions in the inherent themselves, might person ambiguity in terms those"doings" another he orsheis "doing think interpret might gender," when identifies Collins that the basic issue of "doing class,"highlight accurately she argues thatethnomethodology ignorespowerrelations.Power relations and this is why social factsare underlieall processesof social interaction nottoobfuscate ofpower ought uponpeople. Butthepervasiveness constraining than and consequential are moreimportant thefactthatsome powerrelations a woman confer attractiveness that thepower Forexample, others. might physical doesnot oremployer female with herlessattractive inherinteractions supervisor the In the former. latter over of the match theeconomic view, flattening my power in theRGC between difference ofthequalitative orerasure class,raceandgender to it is that for the the foundation is important deal with recognition perspective which nowappear andsubordination" ofdomination relations disembodied, "basic "classreductionism," toreject In theeffort class relations. outside bypostulating theRGC perspective forms ofoppression, classandother between theequivalence to acknowledge ofclass butitis forced thefundamental both importance negates ofdomination. "basic"structures someother itsimportance bypostulating - whether between to the relations we are referring Class relations workers between or to therelations and wage workers, (salariedand capitalist those who are placed in and supervisors, waged) and their managers " for 1978) - areofparamount classlocations, importance, (Wright, "contradictory class in dominant Those them. is determined survival economic most by people's anda crucialway and subordinates overtheir do exert employees power positions their the their is used is that inwhich impute they through choosing identity power claimor "do,"employers workers can,in turn, Whatever workers. might identity

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as "raced" or disregardtheirclaims and "read" their"doings"differently their classlocation as "classed," orboth, rather than thus downplaying "gendered" that class is fundamental To argue, oftheir andtheclassnature then, grievances. toclass,buttoacknowledge that the orracialoppression is notto"reduce" gender basic and "nameless" powerat therootof whathappensin social underlying in "intersectionality" is class power. interactions grounded Conclusion form of reducesclass tojust another As long as theRGC perspective and and remains theoretically eclectic,so that intersectionality oppression, are,ina way, "upfor meaning opentoanyandall theoretical grabs," interlockings will of thosemetaphors of divisionand connection thenature interpretations, and to and even remain contradictory interpretations. ambiguous open conflicting couldlink thattheRGC perspective is nottheonlymacroleveltheory Marxism ofdomination" butitis, I wouldargue, the"basicstructures toexplore toin order for RGC's emancipatory themostsuitable political objectives. Bibliography An anthology. P.H. (1995). Race, Class, and Gender. M.L & Collins, Andersen, CA: Wadsworth Secondedition.Belmont, Publishing Company. in M. (1999). New Directions R. & BahatiKuumba, M. B., Brewer, Barnett, American African & Class Studies: Race,Gender Experiences."Race, Gender& Class, 6(2):7-28. Introduction: J. (1993). "Editor's Race,Sex & Class in Our Belkhir, Integrating Race, Sex & Class, 7(1):3-11. disciplines." on Race, Gender& . (1994). "The 'Failure'and Revivalof Marxism Class Issues." Race, Sex & Class, 2(1):79-107. of Oppression. B. (1994). "Class,Race & Gender:The Triangle Berberoglu, Race, Sex & Class, 2(l):69-77. In E. Ngan-Ling offeminist S. (1996). "Contradictions Gorelick, methodology. and M. Baca Zinn (eds.), Race, Class & Gender. Chow,D. Wilkinson Oaks/London/Dehli: Voices.Thousand Different Common bonds, Sage Publications. Collins, P. H. (1993). "Towarda New Vision: Race, Class and Gender as andConnection." ofAnalysis Race, Sex & Class, i(l):25-45. Categories s DoingDifference. In M. Roth . (1997). On WestandFenstermaker Men and Gender, Walsh (ed.), Women, pp. 73-75. Ongoing Debates. Press. New Haven& London:Yale University London:Blackwell. T. (1996). TheIllusions ofPostmodernism. Eagleton, : A Journal of Gimenez,M.E. (1975). "Marxismand Feminism. Frontiers Women Studies, 7(l):61-80. of Poverty:Mythof Reality/ Social . 1990. "The Feminization Justice , 17(3):43-69. Class." Race, Let'snotForget Race & Ethnicity: Kandal,T. (1995). "Gender, Gender& Class, 2(2): 139-162. 79:37-49. NewLeft ofSubjectivity.' R. (1973). "ThePolitics Review, Jacobi, Marx, K. (1994). "Theseson Feuerbach." In L. Simon (ed.), Karl Marx. New York:Hackett. SelectedWritings.

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to theCritique . ([1859] 1970). A Contribution ofPoliticalEconomy. Publishers. New York: International . (1994). "TheGerman Ideology."In Simon,op. cit. in theSocial Consciousness.New York: . (1963). Class Structure Ossowski, The FreePressofGlencoe. in the UnitedStates:The American Rose, S.J. (1992). Social Stratification Revisedand Expanded. New York:New Press. Profile Poster In M. RothWalsh S. (1997). "Doing Difference." West,C. & Fenstermaker, ed. nn cit nn.58-72. E.O. (1978). Class, Crisisand theState. London:Verso. Wright,

call, faxor e-mailto Race, Gender& Class: write, or order To subscribe Social of Sciences, Jean Ait Belkhir,Department 6400 PressDrive, at New Orleans, Southern University LA 70126 New Orleans, Fax (504) 280 6302 Ph: (504) 286 5232 // E-mail:jbelkhir@suno.edu website: www.suno.edu/sunorgc Gender& Class, 2001 @ Race, Copyright

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