20 Pages

Learning from the Doers: Women of Color AIDS Service Organizations and Their Understanding of Intersectionality

WithJulia Jordan-Zachery

Glenn's (2000) assertion on institutional intersectionality, relative to other research on intersectionality, has not been substantively explored. Using a case study analysis of three AIDS service organizations serving primarily women of color, I analyze how intersectionality is deployed at the institutional level. Extending Black feminist standpoint theory constructs of intersectionality, I use an interpretive phenomenological approach to thematically identify and analyze what the interview discourses revealed about identity construction and understanding among indigenous organizations. The representative interviewees display a collective understanding of the organizations’ identity, which captures how intersecting oppressions including but not limited to race, gender, and sexuality influence the work they do, as they simultaneously work to challenge the impact of such oppressions in service to women who are living at various points of oppression. Listening to the doers of intersectionality offers a link between the theorizing of abstract systems of power, as articulated in intersectionality theory, and its practice.