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Identity Politics and “Interlocking” Oppression

Identity politics has raised numerous debates on its effectiveness in tackling interlocking oppressions. In modern world societies, race, culture, and religion are recipes for an identity politics. However, politics, ethnicity, and race are intersected with femininity to form prejudiced and biased world organizations, thus, influencing life experiences. According to Crenshaw (1991), intersectionality as a system combines the concept of the multiplicity of axes of domination such as sexism, racism, and culture, as not secluded from one another to progress individual’s life skills.

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This established the concept of identity politics that can describe a political system belonging to a particular social background, class, race, and religion. Therefore, it is valid to argue that victimization because of race, culture, ethnicity, gender, and class leads to the formation of various distinctiveness politics. Identity politics is the cause for the formation of racialized political systems and power relations, and corporate capitalism in the contemporary world systems, and the fall of early ethnic and cultural movements.

Identity politics fractures along the lines of authority and power relation to extending the concept of discrimination. The aspect of politics of individuality has dramatically been used by various movements to claim their rights and existence (Bhambra, 2017). These movements have caused various disunities and conflicts among Americans. A modest government’s fundamental principle is to move beyond discriminative boundaries to achieve unity in its jurisdiction.

However, the American civil society faces the obsessed fracturing lines of power mainly caused by the differences in race, sexuality, and ethnicity. This has made it difficult for the states to work in inclusivity and to identify with Americans as one. The claims of identity in the form of group marginalization do not approve of civil politics but continue to work against ending the critical goal of achieving opportunities to abolish marginalization. By attaining the unity, the country claims on its name, all the oppressions can be effectively admonished without categorizing a specific group.

Identity politics resulted in the collapse of the Organization of Women of Asian and African Descent (OWAAD), an ethnic-associated movement formed in the mid-1970s. Though the movement started with strong agendas, its fall has been viewed as gender-specific oppression and discrimination of women of color (Swaby, 2014). The OWAAD, organized around black solidarity across communal partitions, contested varied forms of repression, as witnessed by women from minority ethnic societies.

According to Swaby (2014), the responsibility for determining cohesiveness among women from African-America, Caribbean American, and Asian American needed constant struggles to appraise their heterogeneity of understanding one another. However, when the movement collapsed in 1980, it was perceived to have been the result of identity politics through the act of sexism and racial discrimination. Swaby (2014) posits that the fall of the movement largely emanated from some of the women participating in the politics of specificities and disparity of hierarchies of victimization. Therefore, women should have united to structure the policies of solidarity, rather than engaging in power struggles.

Corporate capitalism manifests in identity politics through the oppression of women from minority ethnic backgrounds. For instance, in the Netherlands, the Party for Freedom, under the leadership of the renowned businessman, Greert Wilder, was position three in the overall election. Wilder achieved this goal even after proposing a policy on the prohibition of Qu’ran and abolition of immigrants from Arabic speaking countries from entering the Netherlands (Mirza, 2013). The result indicated how,through identity politics, the whole republic united towards the oppression of people from specific ethnicity, religion, and culture.

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Conversely, the same women have a political voice in their Arabic nations. For instance, in Tahrir Square, a meeting place for all types of political movements based in Cairo, Egypt, women are seen playing the political roles of leading “genderless” parades in opposing systemic oppressions (Mirza, 2013). In Europe, newspapers and magazines display fake news on how women from Arabic countries are either running from wars and rape cases, an assertion that they cannot justify (Mirza, 2013).

Another good example of identity politics and oppression is witnessed through cultural stereotypes. For instance, the Asian women and virginity tests indicated how women of Asian descent were subjected to the “Virginity test” without their consent at the UK airport in the early years of the 1970s. Consequently, the women lost their rights of expression augmented by the anti-Islamic programs and policies of culture from European counties.

In conclusion, identity politics has mainly promoted social diversity across the globe with the fall of unique movements, the formation of corporate capitalism, and power relations. The spirit of solidarity towards eradicating oppression around the world has been deviated from identity politics and most minds today are accepting the movements for identity rights. However, these movements should establish unity and solidarity to integrate the marginalized groups, thus creating a mainstream culture of togetherness, rather than creating politics of differences.

The continent is under crisis and the focus should be re-directed towards one main aim of achieving personal identity through eradication of oppression interlocked with identity politics. Considering Crenshaw’s argument on feminist claims, the judicial system should discharge fairness just as its name suggests but should not call for identity politics that has immensely created marginalization the world over.


Bhambra, G. K. (2017). Brexit, Trump, and ‘methodological whiteness’: On the misrecognition of race and class. The British Journal of Sociology, 68(1), 214-232. Web.

Crenshaw, K. (1991). Mapping the margins: Intersectionality, identity politics, and violence against women of color. Stanford Law Review, 43(6), 1241-1299. Web.

Mirza, H. S. (2013). Muslim women and gender stereotypes in ‘New Times’: From Multiculturalism to Islamophobia. The State of Race, 96-117. Web.

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Swaby, N. A. (2014). Disparate in voice, sympathetic in direction: Gendered political blackness and the politics of solidarity. Feminist Review, 108(1), 11-25. Web.

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