Before you go back to school: Understand Intersectionality

by | Aug 14, 2017 | College Life, Culture, Paper Topics | 0 comments

I posted the beginning of this post a few weeks ago, but I want to repost it here because it goes with tonight’s study, and it’s so essential for those of you about to head back to school in the next few weeks. If you’re going to college this year, please read this, and the two articles linked to. And, if you’ve already read it, I added more, and another article, below.


Do you understand this sentence?

“The problem with intersectionality arises when it ceases to be an insight and becomes an ideology.”

If not, and you have anything to do with any part of higher education, or for that matter, professional America, I highly encourage you to take some time very soon to read Joe Carter’s excellent, concise article, What Christians Should Know About Intersectionality.

Carter writes:

Although the concept has been around for almost three decades, many Christians have never heard of intersectionality or are unaware of the way it has morphed into a competing worldview.

After explaining the origins of the term and the ideology, he gives a quick explanation of its basic ideas, and notes that, while it offers some helpful insights into the struggles different people face within our cultural structures,

The problem with intersectionality arises when it ceases to be an insight and becomes an ideology. As with many useful concepts, intersectionality can be used to promote the flourishing of the human community or can be used to create new forms of systematic sin. And over the past decade, the concept has frequently…been used as a tool for building division not only between the “oppressors” …and the oppressed, … but separation between groups deemed to be victims.

If you want to understand what’s really happening on College campuses today, and what is driving so much of the tension in our culture at large, in short, if you want to be able to talk to the people who are fired up about things, and not just the people who are checking out, read the whole thing.

Also, in this month’s First Things magazine, Elizabeth Corey has an article entitled The First Church of Intersectionality. Please read this one too. She explains:

Intersectionality is a wholly academic invention that plays a large role in this movement. Indeed, it stands in the vanguard of the progressive academy, allied with critical race studies, queer studies, women’s studies, and ethnic studies. Intersectional scholars proudly proclaim their goal: to smash the neoliberal, corporate, heteropatriarchal academy and then to reinvent it in a way that rejects traditional notions about what universities are meant to do. These scholars also want to redefine the family and to abolish the “binary” of man and woman.


Intersectionality is…quasi-religious gnostic movement, which appeals to people for precisely the reasons that all religions do: It gives an account of our brokenness, an explanation of the reasons for pain, a saving story accompanied by strong ethical imperatives, and hope for the future. In short, it gives life meaning.

In other words, it is, “another Gospel.” And, not only is it firing up rallies on campus, but with only a little attention paid, you’ll notice it shapes many of your text books and class discussions. When I started reading about it, I realized why, in my college days, I had a text-book entitled Race, Class, and Gender.

There’s more to say about this, especially by people who, motivated by the love of Christ, care for the helpless and oppressed. But for tonight, may I just suggest that you get up to speed on all this before you’re back in class?