chapter  4
50 Pages

Intersectionality

ByChristie Launius, Holly Hassel

This chapter explores the different groups benefit from or are disadvantaged by institutional structures, and reviews how overlapping categories of identity profoundly shape one's experiences within institutions. It discusses the work and family by looking at three topics through an intersectional lens: work–life balance; the horizontal segregation of the labor market; the gendered division of household labor and child care. Emerging from past coercive sterilization practices imposed on African American women, controversy about black women's use of the pill complicated the discussion of reproductive control and the development of the oral contraceptive. Intersectionality as a central, formal, and scholarly concern of the field of Women's and Gender Studies did not come about until the late 20th century, and was a result of the powerful critiques leveled by US women of color against some elements of second-wave feminism. The chapter discusses the ways that masculinity is classed and racialized in the Language, Images, and Symbols anchoring topic.