Graduate School of the Arts and Humanities (GSAH)

Key Concepts of the Humanities and Social Sciences

Intersectionality – Reading Group

Wednesday, 2023/04/19 - Wednesday, 2023/04/26

As a mandatory part of the doctoral program Global Studies, the reading course has participants discuss selected key concepts of the Humanities and Social Sciences. Sessions are understood as peer to peer workshops to which participants contribute with suggestions for reading they would like to have discussed.

Event organizer: Interdisciplinary Cultural Studies | Graduate School of the Arts and Humanities | Walter Benjamin Kolleg
Speaker: Olivia Biber & Sabine von Rütte, Universität Bern
Date: 2023/04/19 - 2023/04/26
Time: 14:15 - 18:00
Locality: 216
Mittelstrasse 43
3012 Bern
Characteristics: open to the public
free of charge


19. and 26.04.2023, 2.15 - 6.00 pm


2 (Pflicht- oder Wahlpflichtbereich ICS / Wahlpflichtbereich GS, SLS, SINTA / Modul I GSA)


English (German possible depending on participants)


Mail to as well as on KSL: (Login with UniBe-Account, search with title)


When Black feminist legal scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw first coined the term intersectionality in 1989, she offered a framework for exploring the dynamics of oppression of marginalized communities and people that had a lasting impact way beyond the field of legal studies. With the Denkfigur of the traffic intersection, Crenshaw provided an apt metaphor to make visible the ways systems of inequality based on gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability, class and other forms of discrimination result in unique, dynamic, mutually reinforcing layers of discrimination for individuals. Some thirty years later, intersectionality has become an oft-used buzzword, and an intersectional lens has arguably become indispensable for the work of the critical researcher. But what does intersectionality mean and how has the concept evolved over time? How can we actually put an intersectional approach into practice in our own research? These and more questions will be the subject of our reading group on ‘intersectionality’. The aim of this two-day course is to read and discuss key texts on the notion of intersectionality, to explore the concept in practice, and to reflect on the usefulness and applicability of the concept for our own dissertation projects.


Day 1

Introduction and discussion of key texts


Crenshaw, Kimberle. “Demarginalizing the Intersection of Race and Sex: A Black Feminist Critique of Antidiscrimination Doctrine, Feminist Theory and Antiracist Politics.” The University of Chicago Legal Forum, 1989. 139-167.
Other texts tba

Day 2

Discussion and reflection on intersectionality in practice and in our
own research


Coates, Ta-Nehisi. Between the World and Me. Spiegel & Grau, 2015.
Soriano, Jen. “Multiplicity from the Margins: The Expansive Truth of Intersectional Form.” Assay: A Journal of Nonfiction Studies, 5.1, Fall 2018.