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K-State Today

March 7, 2017

Safe Zone training: 'Understanding Intersectionality'

Submitted by Anna Waugh

Brandon Haddock, coordinator of the LGBT Resource Center, will present the advanced Safe Zone training, "Understanding Intersectionality" from noon to 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 8, in 123 Leadership Studies Building.

This training will focus on how we develop an understanding of the multiple social, cultural and personal identities within each of us.

As an overview, intersectionality was first defined as a major socio-cultural concept by Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw, "Mapping the Margins: Intersectionality, Identity Politics, and Violence Against Women of Color, 1991." Crenshaw articulated the relationship between sex, gender, nation, race and class and showed how women of color had been excluded from women's equality movements and particularly as it pertained to violence against women.

Although the word "intersectionality" is a relatively recent term, it is acknowledged that historically we have engaged in intersectional spaces and identities that do have a holistic approach to society and culture that involves looking at our socially constructed and personal identities together; for example, viewing race and gender together, as opposed to viewing them in isolation.

As part of this Safe Zone training, participants will engage in interactive exercises that help to explore our personal and interpersonal identities and how they may be shared or identified in other individuals that help to describe our diverse communities. 

Training objectives:

  • To allow a space for participants to discuss their different identities and to understand, on a more interpersonal level, the experiences of others.
  • To demonstrate and discuss that even individuals with similar identities can experience different levels of (self) consciousness around a particular identity.
  • To talk about how we experience our identities on a day-to-day basis.
  • To engage participants in how we can recognize intersectionality on our campus and in our classrooms to better engage our students, faculty, and staff in conversations about diversity and inclusion.

Read more information about this session and register online, or contact the LGBT Resource Center at lgbt@k-state.edu.