Awareness of the multitude of intersecting causes and conditions of each body, particularly as they relate to power. Intersectionality. It can be tempting to want to simplify experience, but to really understand it in an honest way, it’s Important to take in the full, complex reality.
I feel like to really embody an understanding of intersectionality, beyond words and even concepts, I need to get more honest about power, and my own relationship to it. To see and feel deeply where this particular body-mind has access to power. And maybe more about where it doesn’t. Maybe. We’ll see.
Eli Clare tonight really moved me, the way he modeled an embodied understanding of the intersections of power, without being shy about the role of white skin in his narrow escape from a lifetime of institutionalization. Owning it while rooted in his anger at the injustice of it.
I think I’m accustomed to denying my access to power, and my privilege, somehow even while also acknowledging it. Like I’m parroting words off a checklist because really feeling the whole truth is painful, unfathomable. What damage must take place in order for a human to turn away from the pain of others, the way white people are conditioned to do regarding harm inflicted by white supremacy?
The writing of Abe Lateiner has me noticing white grief more.
Grief is usually thought of as the product of losing something or someone. But what about a white grief that is rooted in absence, parts of oneself that were tied off at the stump by whiteness, never allowed to develop in the first place?
What would it mean to fully grieve that absence? [Grief and the White Void]
To fully be conscious of the power and privilege of white skin may require acknowledging that grief, giving it room.
Meanwhile, other things I’m reading:
This looks interesting:
Lots of thoughts and feeling swirling around in here. Starting where I am.