Redefining Margins and Center Through Intersectional Activism

Transatlantic Perspectives

  • Claire Hancock Univ Paris-Est Creteil
Keywords: Paris, Afrofeminism, intersectional activism, gentrification, urban policy, margins

Abstract

This paper undertakes a work in translation, borrowing insights from Latin American feminists to reflect on intersectional activists in a European metropolis, Paris. It also makes the case for producing an alternative to universalism by foregrounding marginal voices and treating their theoretical contribution as relevant and just as likely to ‘travel’ beyond their places of origin as contributions from the less marginalized. While written in English, it also makes the case that some shared experiences, such as “racism by denial”, do not translate adequately into Anglo frames of reference. French denial goes as far as denying the vocabulary, and the spaces, necessary for Afropean organizing, and leads to tactical use of virtual spaces for intersectional activism and inclusive feminist mobilizations. Reclaiming community has become a major aim in the Parisian context that both vilifies “communitarianism” and deploys policies favouring gentrification in the name of “mixité”. While the Gilets Jaunes movement makes the territorial component of grievances and calls for justice more clearly visible, the process of organizing a convergence between differently marginalized groups seems facilitated by common experiences of police repression. Urban subjectivities are thus shaped by global geographies while moral economies are deployed in localized ways.

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Published
2021-06-07
How to Cite
Hancock, C. (2021). Redefining Margins and Center Through Intersectional Activism. ACME: An International Journal for Critical Geographies, 20(3), 257-271. Retrieved from https://acme-journal.org/index.php/acme/article/view/2007