strugglingtobeheard

fatpinkhairedfeminist  asked:

hey, I just saw this in your ask "So I recently learned about the origins of intersectional feminism and why a non-black person claiming it is appropriative. " I had no idea.. i did a quick google search, but didn't come up with anything on appropriation. Do you have recommendations on articles/blogs/resources to read on this? If not I'll continue to google and see what I can come up with, but i want to be SURE I get the right resources from someone who knows.

Of course! This seems to be a hot topic right now, so I’m happy to provide you and anyone else with resources.

Tumblr user strugglingtobeheard wrote a piece about a year ago on how White women using the term “intersectional feminist” to describe themselves is appropriative. The general gist of it is that because the term “intersectionality” was coined by a Black woman seeking to discuss and analyze the intersection of oppression specific to Black women (gender+race), White women cannot use the term because they do not live at that intersection. Because White women cannot understand how it feels to be Black, they cannot do justice to the original intent of the word. 

Here’s an excerpt for those who cannot read the full post now:

intersectionality is meant as a bottom up approach, not a top down approach. those with power cannot be “intersectional”. you are also not living intersectional experiences. intersectionality was always about exposing the ways Black women are caught up in multiple systems of oppression, namely race, gender and class, but often many more. it is meant to help Black women understand their experiences in a white supremacist patriarchal culture like the U.S. or much of Western nations that have applied this model onto most cultures from the outside. 

Shortly after that post, theroguefeminist made a PSA about it, saying that White feminists shouldn’t use the term because they experience privilege and try to use the term as a shield from being called out, etc. 

Here’s a snippet from that post:

Some of us like to think if we call ourselves “intersectional” then we’re not like ~THOSE~ white feminists those ~non-intersectional~ white feminists, but that’s not true. We are white feminists–we have white female privilege. We benefit just as much from white supremacy as anyone else and we are just as able to be racist and exclude, talk over, invalidate or ignore woc.

Another blogger, timemachineyeah, was doing research on the topic (just like you), and drew from both theroguefeminist and strugglingtobeheard’s posts, and others. The post was answered by strugglingtobeheard, who made a very interesting point on white women wanting to call themselves intersectional feminists:

White women really are not hands on. they want to be saviors and they want to be named and praised for what they have said but not what they do. and i think the focus on the naming is really an extension of that reality. what do you do? for women? for women of color? how are you applying the knowledge that women have intersectional experiences to your application of feminism? is feminism just an identity or is it how you live and do things?

And finally, here is a post from gradientlair, commenting on how Black feminists’ work in the field is often erased, while the credit is given to someone else. 

An apt bit here:

Womanism. Intersectionality. Matrix of domination. Misogynoir. Four of the many concepts that are fought tooth and nail to not exist[…] Subject to the scrutiny of imperialist White supremacist capitalist patriarchy (this is bell hooks’ combined term) and how it shapes epistemology. Eventually once accepted, then they are disconnected from its originators often for the purpose of silencing other Black women. There’s people who use the terms and ideas to push their agenda (agendas that usually exclude Black women) yet none of the originators are anywhere on their sites. […] when they discuss modern issues in feminism, they refuse to name Black women currently doing the work. They gladly name any White woman they’re referring to.

As for my thoughts on it, I’m of the belief that because anti-blackness is pervasive in every group, only those who can call themselves Black should be able to lay claim to the term “intersectional feminist.” This way, the term will always bring to the forefront the origins of the word. Though I also believe that everyone should apply intersectional theory to how they analyze oppressive institutions in general. 

I know this is a lot to read, so for a quick TLDR;

If you’re white, don’t call yourself an intersectional feminist because-

  • you do not experience the type of oppression that the term was coined to discuss
  • it has been used by white feminists as a shield to avoid being held accountable for bigoted actions or words
  • some white feminists fixate on it as a way to separate themselves from other white feminists in order to seem less problematic without putting in actual intersectional work (again, avoiding accountability)
  • intersectionality is often used without proper credit being given to the creators of the concept (Black women)
  • claiming it as a white woman erases Black women and pushes away the issue of anti-blackness

Hope all of this helped! And fellow Black/intersectional feminists, if I got something wrong, please add a response or send an ask!

-Mod T

As a Black Man who has dated almost every race of women I am here to tell you that...

White woman and Latina woman are just as much drama as Black Woman. Stop acting like something is wrong with Black Woman. I’m attracted to all kinds of women but you ain’t gonna see me justifying not dating a Black Women because they have “problems”. She even if black women are these naggers and got bad attitudes, they are still more likely to hold a Black Man down through some of the worst of times. I’ve seen Black women stick through there man in the worst of the worst of times. But I will say some of ya’ll Black Women and Men bloggers are really going down the deep end with the hate of each other. It’s not that serious half the time. We need stop making generalizations of each other because they are all bullshit. Cool out life is too short.

[image of strugglingtobeheard in a bikini with a purple flower background. image reads: “TWERK CONTEST Submit your video by August 31st. Send your video to chelsea@theuntitledmag.com with "Twerk” in the subject line.]

TWERK CONTEST!

You think you a good twerker? LET’S SEE! Grab a camera and show us what you got. Tumblr’s own strugglingtobeheard and arulpragasams will see what you got going on and pick the Top Three Videos. Then we’ll turn the three videos over to The Untitled Mag readers. The video with the most votes wins! So what are you waiting for? 

The contest runs until August 31st, 2012. The winner gets a spot on theuntitledmag.com with your own Twerk Videos and Tutorials! 

Some stuff to know:

1. You must be 18+. We aren’t going to check IDs or demand to see some proof. We’re just going by the honor system. Honor it, please!

2. The video cannot exceed over 10 minutes. Try to keep it in the 2-8 minutes range. 

3. No nudity!

4. Have FUN! 

Please send all Twerk submissions to chelsea@theuntitledmag.com with the subject “Twerk”

I feel that terms that we have that describe us as a people like black and blackness are best used when speaking about experiences that affect us ALL as black people.

I think that when we want to boggle things down to speak about our experience as Black Americans (in the US I mean) then (so that we dont erase black immigrants with our language) we need to be as specific as possible.

Especially when there are so many of us in America who don’t have slave origins. Our cultural genocide (as slave descendant Black people in America) has left us with only the term Black to describe our everything.

Our race is Black.

Our ethnicity is American Black [or just to some as generally stated is Black].

Our nationality (for those who don’t claim Americanism because of its racism) is Black. 

The unfortunate fact is (even if some immigrants want to try that im not black im [ethnicity] bullshit. trust me I’ve seen it -_-) Black/Blackness ALSO describes people who look like us all over the world, and DEFINITELY describes Black immigrants from other countries.

And as jules said Blackness is what society deems it so, and we all know that white america has NO problem homogenizing our cultures and identities as just BLACK, solely because our race is Black.

So when we talk about our blackness, and say things like “x is not black”, how are people supposed to know flat out what you’re talking about?

Are you talking about race, are you talking about ethnicity (and if you are one of those people that speak about black nationalism) are you talking about Nationality?

It makes it REAL easy for what you’re saying to be turned into identity politics.

And to be honest,

I think its a fair ass claim to say that Barack Obama is not culturally Black, or that he isn’t nationally (in terms of black liberation) Black. Especially with his bullshitty “bootstraps” speech, and “respect the injustice of a racist that killed a black child in America, and the jury that let him go free”.

Racially tho, he is Black. And if there’s no clarification of that, I think the point of a post can be lost REALLLY quickly.

AND I REALIZED AS I WRITE THIS, that Terrell at the end of his post said something to the effect of “he looks black but thats about it”.

Tbh he’s kinda right. But the words “he isn’t black” struck a LOT of nerves with people because w/o clarification, it SOUNDS like identity politics.

strugglingtobeheard?

I don’t know this woman personally… but if you are going to expose someone… what’s the cause?

I mean, is she…

  • A terrorist?
  • did she killed Tupac?
  • did she killed Biggie?
  • Is she the reason why the hood is flooded with drugs?
  • Is she linked to Reganomics?
  • Does she run a site that steals passwords?
  • Is she running a pyramid scheme?
  • did she threaten to kill you?

Wait - newsflash… she answered my ask…

… according to this here answer…

… she told a brother off…

that’s it? That’s it???

That’s all?

You got all this power… and you’re going to go after this genderfluid person based on… telling someone off?

You’re going to put someone’s life in danger… because… she has a mind and isn’t a vegetable willing to take your bullshit?

All of this… over… words…

REALLY???

And these are BLACK people acting up? Y'all upset because of one damn video? Y'all gonna expose someone’s address because she does what a woman who don’t want your ass would do anyway?

All this exposure over that?

All this timeline exposure over this?

All of these IDIOTIC HORSE HOCKEY (pardon my french) over getting butt hurt (sorry) about getting your feelings hurt???

What kinda… you know what… I’m going to bed before I hurt these assholes feelings and they wanna hack up my business name. I got a life.

*goes to bed* asshole fuckers doing CIA stuff for some misogynistic bullshit…

Ok woooooooooooooooow.

So this happened. I personally wanted to drop the matter after so-treu didn’t bother to respond AT ALL when she was proven wrong but let’s do this.

Based on what she’s written here (’ i clarified that my issue is black ppl appropriating black national language from nations they’re not from, familiar with and immersed in. chinna said their primary engagement with aave was through media/the internet, i.e. NOT real life experiences. for them to then adopt that is a form of appropriation.’), so-treu seems to be labouring under the impression that I am not black American and that I wanted to adopt AAVE. My background is as follows: my mother is Punjabi and African-American and my father is Afro-Brazilian. I was born in Britain, but I am a citizen of the US as well and I moved here at age 11. Clearly this is not the typical black American narrative but yeah, I am from here. I have roots in this country. Let’s not be confused on that point.

And no, I am not asking if it it’s ok for me to speak in AAVE. For me personally, it doesn’t feel right. It’s not the dialect I was brought up speaking. My original post was more of a general question based on class distinctions. I know so many black people, middle-class black people who in one breath, think they are so much better than ‘ghetto hoodrats’ and in the next breath, slip into dialect. I am not comfortable with that. At all. Maybe I should have said what prompted the original post.

'chinna said their primary engagement with aave was through media/the internet, i.e. NOT real life experiences.’

WRONG. If I recall, you are very big on context. Are your posts the only ones that deserve the luxury of proper context?

'chinna STILL hasn’t clarified their relationship to black american culture.’

What would you like to know?

Now with struggglingtobeheard, she wrote in response: ’chinna really has some fucking issues and ever since that whole thing with of-praxis, lebanese and him, i personally think he doesn’t have much respect for Black Americans at all.’

She made an accusation that I am anti-black american (’apparently there is now a good black tumblr and bad one and most of it is not american except for two men.’), based on my response to this question. I read that question as like 'who are some of your personal favourite bloggers who discuss race’ not 'who are the GOOD black bloggers.’ Sloka has confirmed to me that this is what they meant. As you can see here, eight of the nine bloggers mentioned are American and six of nine are women. I never received a response to this post. I thought we were supposed to show receipts but ok…

struggling also wrote here to so-treu ’honestly, i don’t know why people are trying to act like you started some shit and went from there.’ Um yeah, that is exactly what she fucking did. I don’t follow her, she doesn’t follow me but all of a sudden, she’s reblogging my posts telling me to butt out and starting all of this nonsense. THAT is what happened, anyone following both of us (and we have a ton of mutual followers) can tell you exactly how it went down this morning. I didn’t start any of this and I wish it would die out but if that side wants to continue to spew rubbish half-truths, I’m game because I’m SICK of them.

Omfg! Why are they bothering you? Like I don’t understand. Like you didn’t post this in your tag, so why are they stalking your blog. And for the love of god can someone tell me how saying ”crew" is antiblack, because last time I checked a crew is a group of people that work together. That’s it ! It says nothing about those individuals being black or that their all one monolith. So why in gods name are they so mad! Unless you are really apart of some crew. You know I followed you guys and I respected you but now you all sound like 5 year olds, that didn’t get the candy you wanted or a goddamn cult. Stop messing with Mahakvi, just because someone doesn’t agree with you means their antiblack .

What’s being done to strugglingtobeheard right now is repulsive. I don’t care what kind of issue you have with someone on the internet, stalking and doxing is never an acceptable solution. I’ve reported shehateme to Tumblr Support and I urge everyone else to do the same.

strugglingtobeheard  asked:

writing to send you ALL the love. these fucking racist fools talking about it has no consequences, TELLING BLACK GIRLS THEY CANT BE PROUD OF BEING BLACK WHEN WE HAVE BEEN DEEMED UGLY, UNWORTHY, UNFEMININE, when we have been systemically sterilized and abused, does have real fucking consequences. being a racist white woman with a job who applauds the death of Black boys by racists does have real life affects. ON BLACK LIFE, which they clearly dont care for. honestly you're a hero & i commend YOU!

Wait wait wait but you forget!!! WHITE people don’t have to deal with it, therefore, we don’t either, because the white experience is universal, even when they see how fucked over we get by whiteness every day!

You ain’t never lied.

Seriously tho thanks, strugg. I love you tons!! The support means a lot. And a hero, wow, that’s such high praise, and it means a lot coming from you. Like, I can’t even fhasodfhiao