The Importance Of Privilege And Oppression In Society

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Privilege and oppression stems from the socially contracted categories that are used to identify who we are. Whether aware of it or not, most of us find our lives affected by both privilege and oppression. Further meaning, are lives are shaped by the oppression and privilege we experience. It affects who we are and how we interact with those around us. In order to decipher how you experience privilege and oppression, when it isn’t clear, it’s important to identify your socially constructed categories and how they either put you at an advantage or disadvantage. I believe that I am aware of most of my oppressions but not so much my privilege. This is supported by the fact that socially constructed categories and how they affect systematic inequalities …show more content…
It is much easier for me, and those who are light-skinned, to assimilate into white supremacy and to access white privilege. For example, as a mixed female my beauty standards in society are much different than black females who are not light-skinned. I have lighter skin that some white people crave for through tanning. I have a less kinky curl pattern, that can easily be manipulated as wavy or made straight, that is perceived as more professional. Society has created the idea that I am more beautiful than a black woman with dark skin and kinky hair because I am not that black since I have lighter skin and less kinky hair. This also occurs within the black community when black males are more drawn towards lighter-skinned black females than darker-skinned black females. Another instance of this is in terms of political and economic success rates. I am more privileged as a lighter-skinned tone black individual to see representation than someone who is darker-skinned. There are far more mix/light-skinned black people in the public eye as successful than there are dark-skinned black people. For instance, the first black president is mixed. Therefore, my sense of oppression, which grants me privilege, differs from those of the black community because I am …show more content…
That is only one fragment of how systematic inequalities teaches people to embrace the dichotomous thinking and continually make those boundaries. We work on solving one oppression by making another and blocking out those who may be privileged. Society is constantly making a “me vs you.” Systematic inequalities are preventing us from fully accepting our differences to embrace diversity for what it is. They are driven by these intersections of who we are. No longer are systematic inequalities based on solely race, gender, class, and among other things but rather how they intersect and shape the way people are oppressed or privileged. Therefore, our efforts in understanding and changing a system based on oppression and privilege should represent this

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