Lines In The Sand – AudioZine


1:07:16 – Lines In The Sand: Three essays on identity, oppression, and social war – by Peter Gelderloos – MP3ReadPrint ArchiveTorrentYouTube

“…I think we all need to fiercely reject the Ally as a primary identity of
struggle. You cannot give solidarity if you are not struggling first
and foremost for your own reasons. To be only or primarily an ally is to
be a parasite on others’ struggles, with no hope greater than to be a
benign parasite; it is to refuse to acknowledge our interests and place
in the world out of a dogmatic insistence on identifying ourselves with
the system we are supposed to be fighting. Being aware of relative
oppression and privilege is vital, but emphasizing those differences
over the fact that all of us have common enemies and all of us have
reasons to destroy the entire system is deliberately missing
opportunities to make ourselves stronger in this fight.”

Lines in Sand is a collection by Peter Gelderloos that looks
critically at identity politics and anti-oppression politics. All of
them are very thought provoking and well worth reading. These aren’t
knee-jerk criticisms, but rather are thoughtful explorations of the
problematic aspects of identity and anti-oppression politics and

“…tokenization and paternalism are on any list of “fucked up” behaviors in
an anti-oppression practice, thus the practice protects itself from
open complicity with the very problems it creates. Human agency is a
fundamental component of freedom, perhaps the most important one;
therefore if someone is denied agency in their own struggle because the
most legit thing they can do is be an ally to someone else’s struggle,
it is inevitable that they will exercise their agency in the course of
supporting a struggle they view as someone else’s. To do so, they will
either look for any oppressed person who supports a form of struggle
they feel inclined towards, and use them as a legitimating façade, or
they will try to participate fully and affect the course of a broader
campaign or coalition in which they are pretending to be mere allies. In
other words, by presenting privilege as a good thing, anti-oppression
politics creates privileged people who have nothing to fight for and
inevitably tokenize or paternalize those whose struggles are deemed
(more) legitimate.”