Beyond the Intersection: A New Culinary Metaphor for Race-Class-Gender Studies

Sociological Theory 26 (2):152-172 (2008)
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Abstract

Few would argue that race, class, and gender are unrelated, now that scholars of inequality have spent decades making the once devalued but now widely accepted case that structures of oppression like these cannot be understood in isolation from one another. Yet the imagery on which the field has relied--race, class, and gender as "intersecting" or "interlocking"--has limited our ability to explore the characteristics of their relationships in empirical and theoretical work. In this article I build on the gender framework articulated by Leslie Salzinger to articulate new imagery--via a metaphor of sugar--which highlights how race, class, and gender are produced, used, experienced, and processed in our bodies, human and institutional. This metaphor allows us to emphasize structural and individual forces at work in their continual and mutual constitution.

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