Crenshaw has worked extensively on a variety of issues pertaining to gender and race in the domestic arena including violence against women, structural racial inequality, and affirmative action. A specialist on race and gender equality, she has facilitated workshops for human rights activists in Brazil and in India, and for constitutional court judges in South Africa. Her groundbreaking work on “intersectionality” has traveled globally and was influential in the drafting of the equality clause in the South African Constitution.
In 1996, Crenshaw co-founded the African American Policy Forum, a gender and racial justice legal think tank, which houses a variety of projects designed to deliver research-based strategies to better advance social inclusion. In 2011, Crenshaw founded the Center for Intersectionality & Social Policy Studies at Columbia Law School, which aims to foster critical examination of how social structures and related identity categories such as gender, race, and class interact on multiple levels, resulting in social inequality.
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- The Intersectional Paradigm: Race & Gender in Work, Life & Politics
"Intersectionalilty," a term coined by speaker Kimberlé Crenshaw, calls attention to the multiple forces that create and sustain power and privilege in American society - and contribute to the discrimination and oppression of minority groups. One-dimensional approaches to social justice advocacy continue to divide key constituencies into distant and sometimes competing interests. Nowhere is this division more clearly visible than in discourses surrounding racial and gender bias in the workplace, where one-dimensional approaches often render the experiences of women of color unintelligible. A leading authority in the area of civil rights, black feminist legal theory, race, racism, and the law, Crenshaw shares her groundbreaking work on "intersectionality" in this fascinating keynote, explaining how our inability to view oppression in society in terms of interrelated categories instead of separate ones - for example, separating gender from racial inequality, instead of merging the two - results in greater oppression for those who stand at the intersection of these categories - such as black women.