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Critical Race Theory, Gender, Sexuality, Race, Class, Inequality, Injustice


Insider critiques of CRT also require critical assessment. Recent internal critics complain that racial identity discourse, including multidimensionality theory, marginalizes more important attention to material, class, or economic issues. If their claim holds true, the material harm critics serve a vital purpose: because racial injustice causes and interacts with economic deprivation, any progressive racial justice movement should interrogate class and economic inequality concems. Nevertheless, the analysis of the material harm critics suffers because it dichotomizes class and multidimensionality. Although these critics bifurcate multiplicity and class analysis, multiplicity theories relate to class analysis in two important respects. First, poverty has multidimensional sources. Gender, sexuality, race, and other factors contribute to economic disadvantage. Accordingly, an accurate account of economic inequality must consider the multidimensionality of structures of subordination. Second, poverty (alongside race, gender, class, and sexuality) is a source of identity construction and social group experiences; as such, any comprehensive analysis of identity should take class into account.

This Article explicates my thesis in three parts. Part II sets forth an "intellectual history" of CRT, isolating the central historical and social forces that gave rise to its development as a body of jurisprudential research. Part III discusses both historical and recent insider and external critiques of CRT and relates these critiques to the development of critical race methodologies. Part III offers new perspectives on outsider critiques that describe CRT as nihilistic and on insider critiques that bifurcate multiplicity theories and class. Part IV "introduces" the works of this Symposium and connects them to ongoing theoretical projects within CRT.

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American University Law Review