Reconciling My Privilege

I’ve been reflecting on my blogging and my feminism a lot lately and, no matter how I frame it, I just keep coming up disappointed with myself and my blog.

While I’m proud of the posts I have written and (for the most part) still believe every word I have written, although some of the REALLY old posts make me cringe just a bit at how much I didn’t know, I have not done nearly enough to highlight the many intersections of oppression that exist within our culture and the feminist movement.

767px-No_sexism_racism_homophobiaMy personal definition of feminism believes that all oppressions are linked and need to be fought together. Politically and ideologically I am very concerned with GLBTIQ issues, class issues, and issues of race in addition to the gender issues and sexism I blog about so often… unfortunately, I don’t think my writing reflects this intersection nearly as well as it should.

I honestly hesitated to make this post for awhile because I don’t like the way in which it makes inclusiveness seem like some grand, abnormal gesture. To be clear: I am not looking for praise here, I don’t deserve praise, if anything I owe apologies for not being an effective ally in the past. I posted this because I wanted this statement to be public and recorded so that my readers know where I stand and will (hopefully) feel encouraged hold me to my promise to work towards being a better ally in my blogging.

Here’s where I promise to educate myself and start blogging more about GLBTIQ issues, race issues, class issues, and so on… I truly do plan to educate myself much more (starting with a whole stack of books from my Women’s Center’s library) and start taking a vocal stance on these issues; but this isn’t enough. I fear that as a straight white middle-class woman I simply do not have the depth of experience necessary to contribute much anything of value to these conversations… which is why I am making my second resolution: to link more.

As often as I can (at least once a week) I’m going to compile a list of posts here on important issues that I cannot personally speak to, by bloggers who I respect and admire a great deal. Practically this doesn’t serve much of a purpose – these posts would still get read without my linking them, their voices would still be heard… in all honesty these bloggers will be doing me a favor in allowing me to link their work. I view this decision as symbolic at best – an earnest attempt to reflect these issues on this blog in the capacity that they deserve, but I am incapable of doing justice to.

I’m going to reflect on this more in the days ahead as I try to shift the focus of this blog to a more inclusive one. If you have any suggestions I’d love to hear them in the comments and/or via e-mail (imaginejill@gmail.com) Also, if you’ve written a post that you’d like linked here (or even posted in full here, with credit of course, and linked back to you) let me know via email – the more voices represented on here, the better!

– J

3 thoughts on “Reconciling My Privilege

  1. I have to admit that I can relate to your dilemma. For awhile now I have been so conflicted with the term WOC. I realize that it is meant to be inclusive but more often than not it tends to stand for Black women thus marginalizing other very important voices. As a womanist I have seen first hand some of the mistakes of feminism as it relates to race and yet I see the same thing reoccurring within womanism with the difference being that the privilege is given to Black women. I have begun to seek ways to broaden the conversation to ensure that WOC really does mean WOC but it is a difficult journey.

  2. Thank you so much for your comment! Your blog is actually one of the main reasons I was inspired to make this post and take a critical look at the message I was communicating through my activism. I really appreciate your input.

    – J

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