Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Quoted: Cathy Cohen> On Assimilation


Sent to you by moya via Google Reader:


via New Model Minority by admin on 1/20/10

"…it also highlights the limits of lesbian and gay political
agenda based on civil rights strategy, where assimilation
into and replication of, dominant institutions are the goals.

Many of us continue to search for new political direction and
agenda, one that does not focus integration into dominant
structures but instead seeks to transform the basic fabric
and hierarchies that allow systems of oppression to persist
and operate efficiently."

Cathy Cohen has had a huge influence on me. In fact her writing about Queer theory helped me to rethink racial assimilation. Most notably her book The Boundaries of Blackness: HIV and the Breakdown of Black politics and the essay "Punks, Bulldaggers and Welfare Queens: The Radical Potential of Queer Politics."

Before reading her, I had never thought of the perils and benefits of assimilation, or what it means to think about alternate strategies to assimilation.

Now I realize that every step that we take, to either assimilate
or not has its own set of consequences.

Cohen goes on to say, regarding sexuality,

…the sexual subject is understood to be constructed and
contained by multiple practices of categorization and regulation
that systematically marginalize and oppress those subjects thereby defined as deviant "other." At its best, queer theory focuses on and makes central only the socially constructed nature of sexuality and sexual categories, but also the varying degrees and multiple sites of power distributed within all categories of sexuality, including normative category of heterosexuality.

You have any thoughts about assimilation?
Any thoughts on multiple sites of power?

Related posts:

  1. Happy Black Girl Day x Assimilation x Whiteness
  2. Racism, Sexism, Homophobia and Black Folks


Things you can do from here:


No comments: