Getting Woke?

Pertinent points made by Frances S. Lee, a queer designer, trans baker and cultural studies scholar. Lee writes:

As a QTPOC (queer trans person of color), I have experienced discrimination and rejection due to who I am. … And yet, I reject QTPOC supremacy, the idea that QTPOCs or any other marginalized groups deserve to dominate society. The experience of oppression does not grant supremacy, in the same way that being a powerful colonizer does not. Justice will never look like supremacy. I wish for a new societal order that does not revolve around relations of power and domination.

5 Comments for “Getting Woke?”

  1. posted by Jorge on

    I wish for a new societal order that does not revolve around relations of power and domination.

    I don’t think that’s possible.

    Even power structures that are more circular than hierarchical revolve around relations of power and domination to some extent (I’m not sure if the pun is intended). They spread the power and the opportunity for it to many people in many different situations.

    The domination is somewhat inherent in the model. Those who want to know exactly where they stand do not, those who want to get ahead cannot. Success requires manipulation of people rather than manipulation of merit. I think it is a fair guess that many of Mr. Miller’s posts are about just this sort of model in action. This article’s subject matter is a fine example.

    I’m at the point of my career in which I outrank most of my peers. It’s made the stories about Roger Ailes and Bill O’Reilly very interesting reading. It is important to pay close attention to the power you have and monitor your hidden uses of it. The potential pitfalls seem endless, humility a constant requirement.

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  2. posted by tj 3 on

    Gotta say, all this talk of discipline and being dominated …..is downright queer.

    meanwhile…the situation for gay people in Russia declines…meanwhile civil rights protection in America are killed in committ

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  3. posted by TJ 3 on

    Hierachies in a large entity or institution are probably inevitable, but what type of hierachies exist, is a different matter.

    Talking about white privilege, as an example, is not the same thing as seeking to, “oppress the white man”.

    likewise when talking about ethnic ancestry or class or gender or sexual orientation.

    The confusion exists when folks on the right create lies for partisan ends and when folks on the left dont really understand what it means to talk about how race or class or gender or sexual orirntation can give people privileges.

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    • posted by Jorge on

      When I was in college someone invited Peggy McIntosh (who is a white) to speak, and I was given an essay of hers in advance of the event titled something like “Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack.” It’s not the only time last time I read her in academia. Anyway, three takeaways from her.

      1) She explains the concept extremely well and in a way that is extremely difficult to dismiss.

      2) It is still very, very difficult for me to understand. She explains it in way that I cannot relate to. “I can walk into a store, buy an item, and have no one follow me around.” Wait, what? That’s normal.

      3) In comparison to the instruction, her other conclusions are so tentative and understated they are not worth remarking on (I certainly don’t remember any of them). It’s probably her grandmotherly tone. In the end the learner will come to their own conclusions. And that is as it should be.

      For these reasons I consider it useless to have a conversation about privilege without it being tongue in cheek. People simply will not understand. No, actually, I just don’t like being vulnerable.

      Reply
  4. posted by Tj 3rd on

    Not surprisingly, Stephen wants to tell a narrative that has very little to do with creating positive change in terms off attitudes, institutional norms, legislation or having an honest conversation about privilege.

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