Western onlookers have a very firm notion of the trajectory along which LGBTQ rights should advance. That trajectory places trans rights as a clear “next step,” something that can only be achieved once the groundwork has been laid by the advancement of the “L,” “G,” and perhaps “B” contingencies (representing lesbian, gay, and bisexual, respectively). But the Lebanese courts are not following that trajectory. The same ruling that decriminalized homosexuality also formally recognized gender variation and codified principles of self-identification. This nuanced view of the interplay between sexuality and gender identification doesn’t fit with the traditional (Western) “gay rights” narrative, and has resulted in Western media coverage that almost completely silences the critical role a transwoman played in achieving this landmark ruling.

Muftah - Lebanon Just Did a Whole Lot More Than Legalize Being Gay (via anotherlgbttumblr)

(Source: notfuckingcishet, via sociolab)

Today the individual has become the highest form, and the greatest bane, of artistic creation. The smallest wound or pain of the ego is examined under a microscope as if it were of eternal importance. The artist considers his isolation, his subjectivity, his individualism almost holy. Thus we finally gather in one large pen, where we stand and bleat about our loneliness without listening to each other and without realizing that we are smothering each other to death. The individualists stare into each other’s eyes and yet deny each other’s existence. We walk in circles, so limited by our own anxieties that we can no longer distinguish between true and false, between the gangster’s whim and the purest ideal.

— Ingmar Bergman. (via x-89)

(via sociolab)

The hermeneutical method of social analysis requires constantly reminding oneself that meanings change, and that someone who may stand as oppressed today could stand as oppressor tomorrow.

— Lewis R. Gordon x “Recent Africana Religious Thought” x Existentialism Africana: Understanding Africana Existential Thought

(Source: tabulasar, via sociolab)

It is necessary to question the presence of people in color in the academy as an unquestioned good. Does tenuring more native or ethnic studies scholars necessarily contribute to a decolonized academy, or does it serve to further retrench a colonial academic system by multiculturalizing it? Does our position in the academy help our communities or does it enable us to engage in what Cathy Cohen describes as a process of secondary marginalization, creating an elite class that can oppress and police the rest of the members of our communities? Have we fallen into the trap Elizabeth Povinelli describes of simply adding social difference to the multicultural academy without social consequence? Does our presence help challenge the political and economic status quo, or does our presence serve as an alibi for the status quo? In asking these questions, I do not suggest that there is politically pure space from which to work outside the academic-industrial complex, and yet still constitute a subversion that matters. However, it is an imperative to ensure our opposition within the academy is more contestatory and less complicit.

— Andrea Smith, ‘Native Studies and Critical Pedagogy : Beyond the Academic-Industrial Complex’   (via vidrieras)

(Source: lonelyhapax, via sociolab)

If slavery persists as an issue in the political life of black America, it is not because of an antiquarian obsession with bygone days or the burden of a too-long memory, but because black lives are still imperiled and devalued by a racial calculus and a political arithmetic that were entrenched centuries ago. This is the afterlife of slavery - skewed life chances, limited access to healthcare and education, premature death, incarceration, and impoverishment. I, too, am the afterlife of slavery.

— Saidiya Hartman, Lose Your Mother: A Journey ALong the Atlantic Slave Route, pp. 6 (via howtobeterrell)

(via sociolab)

Today we see that this fear of immigrants coming across the border to take jobs and to take educational resources and who are going to drain the tax base of your county. These fears that they are coming to take from you is leading and has led to another for get tough movement. Get tough on them, those immigrants who have violated the law by crossing over. And this wave of punitiveness now directed towards immigrants is leading to the same kind of indifference towards their basic humanity that we have seen in the war on drugs and the get tough movement that led to the rise of mass incarceration. I mean, race has been used as a wedge again and again throughout American history to divide the lower classes, if you will. And to create an environment in which poor and working class people are pit against one another.

Michelle Alexander

(via sociolab)

Yet, when we talk about debt, mostly we talk about it as a thing – as the kind of thing that hangs from the body like a ball and chain or from our necks like an albatross. We talk a lot about how debt makes us feel: atomized, isolated, alone. But, we don’t often talk about how the neoliberal construct of perpetual indebtedness to non-human financial entities has created a populous so focused on debts “owed” to Wall Street that we have no collective memory of any other kinds of debts. But, once we open Pandora’s box to take a look at the intersections of debt and race, we are forced to ask ourselves how it is that we have forgotten so much. Could it be that alongside the rise of the neoliberal social order characterized by the isolation of the invisible chains of debt, a parallel practice of “colorblindness” arose that produces the invisibility of race? And if Malcolm X was correct that we “cannot have capitalism without racism,” we have to ask ourselves whether racism has really declined with colorblindness, or whether colorblindness might be neoliberalism’s corollary. It has been under a gray monotone cloud that a predatory debt system has been advanced, one that striped African-Americans of all economic gains subsequent to Civil Rights, and that spread throughout the rest of the economy, impacting generations to come.

— Pamela Brown, “Can We Have Capitalism Without Racism? The Invisible Chains of Debt and the Catastrophic Loss of African American Wealth

(Source: sextus--empiricus, via sociolab)

Is it political if I tell you that if we burn coal, you’re going to warm the atmosphere? Or is that a statement of fact that you’ve made political? It’s a scientific statement. The fact that there are elements of society that have made it political, that’s a whole other thing.

— Neil deGrasse Tyson

(Source: alwaysmoneyinthebnanastand, via sociolab)

guardian:

Death row inmate Glenn Ford released 30 years after wrongful conviction
Glenn Ford has been freed from the notorious Angola prison in Louisiana having lived under the shadow of the death sentence for 30 years. He becomes one of the longest-serving death row inmates in US history to be exonerated.
Ford was released on the order of a judge in Shreveport after Louisiana state prosecutors indicated they could no longer stand by his conviction. In late 2013 the state notified Ford’s lawyers that a confidential informant had come forward with new information implicating another man who had been among four co-defendants originally charged in the case. Read more
Pictured: Glenn Ford, 64, talks to the media as he leaves the maximum-security Angola prison in Louisiana. Source: WAFB-TV 9

guardian:

Death row inmate Glenn Ford released 30 years after wrongful conviction

Glenn Ford has been freed from the notorious Angola prison in Louisiana having lived under the shadow of the death sentence for 30 years. He becomes one of the longest-serving death row inmates in US history to be exonerated.

Ford was released on the order of a judge in Shreveport after Louisiana state prosecutors indicated they could no longer stand by his conviction. In late 2013 the state notified Ford’s lawyers that a confidential informant had come forward with new information implicating another man who had been among four co-defendants originally charged in the case. Read more

Pictured: Glenn Ford, 64, talks to the media as he leaves the maximum-security Angola prison in Louisiana. Source: WAFB-TV 9

(Source: theguardian.com, via sociolab)

Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are part of nature and therefore part of the mystery that we are trying to solve

— Max Planck

(Source: vi5i0nthng, via sociolab)

If we paid women the same wages as men for comparable work, that would halve the poverty rate in American families. It would also raise the standard of living for males in two-earner working- and middle-class households. And if the United States adopted job-protected, subsidized family leave, as more than 180 other countries in the world already have done, men, women and children would all benefit. Pay equity, comparable worth policies and family-friendly work reforms are not just “women’s issues” any more. They are our next civil rights challenge — perhaps our next human rights challenge.

Women have come a long way, but have far to go

(via sociolab)

Homophobia is more than the irrational fear of gay men, more than the fear that we might be perceived as gay…. Homophobia is the fear that other men will unmask us, emasculate us, reveal to us and the world that we do not measure up, that we are not real men.

— Michael Kimmel, “Masculinity as Homophobia”

(Source: nick-ty)

Now what characterises urban sociology is precisely the absence of any clear deliminations of its real objects. Certainly, industry describes a certain type of productive activity, education refers to the set of processes of apprenticeship socialisation, institutionally established selection, etc. But what of the urban? In current usage, urban is contrasted to rural; thus everything must be either urban or rural. But the rural -urban contrast lacks distinguishing criteria, since in terms of social content the contrast refers primarily to the distinctions between industrial society and agrarian society, and as far as the spacial forms of society are concerned, their diversity cannot be reduced to a dichotomy, nor be placed on a continuum one has merely to remember that the city is indissolubly part of the metropolitan region, and that the small town is as distant from the village as it is from the large city.

— Manuel Castells - Theory and Ideology in Urban Sociology

(Source: sociology-of-space)