By Ivy Ken (auth.)
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Additional resources for Digesting Race, Class, and Gender: Sugar as a Metaphor
This is all to say that many differences in bodies result from, rather than drive, social arrangements. Thus, we must focus on conditions rather than on individual people when we try to understand how life is organized. While individuals do have different bodies—different ear lobe shapes, different leg lengths, different abilities and capacities, different skin tones, different internal organs, different relationships to space, different genes—by and large it is not these body differences that organize people’s lives.
Metaphor and the Organization of Social Life 13 produced, what people and institutions do with it once it exists, why we consume it, and how it then comes to shape us and our social world. Only by examining very context-specific relationships, like these and hopefully using framework like this to establish some of the major relationships in ways that future work can build on, will our studies of race, class, and gender flourish. The larger theoretical framework on which this work relies has been generated and honed by race-class-gender scholars for more than three decades.
While the distinctions among these three terms are not overwhelmingly clear, the concepts together help us comprehend much of what race, class, and gender have to do with one another. In my reading, I see at least are three implicit definitions of this cluster of terms—two that deal with categories and one that deals with the larger structures or “systems” of which those categories are but one part. First, the most basic idea is that within race, or within gender, or within class, the categories that constitute these entities are “relational”: black is related to white; woman is related to man; and poor 36 Digesting Race, Class, and Gender is related to rich.