Author: Alethia Jones

Director of Education and Leadership Development at 1199 SEIU United Healthcare Workers East. Before that she was an assistant professor at Rockefeller College of Public Affairs (SUNY-Albany). She is co-editor, with Virginia Eubanks, of Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around: Forty Years of Movement and Building with Barbara Smith

Identity Politics: Part of a Reinvigorated Class Politics

Alethia Jones

Identity politics has its share of shortcomings. But the problems that plague an anemic class politics won’t be solved by eliminating its supposed competitor. In recent decades, identity politics has mushroomed to include more and more social groups for good reason: numerous categories of persons have been systematically denied rights, privileges, and social respect. Major social categories, like race and sexuality, are not a “distraction” from the “real” problem of economic inequality; rather they are an integral part of an individual’s lived experiences. But identity politics cannot end all forms of inequality. At best, it is one strategy in a larger assault against systems of inequality. Read more