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  •  Good points (8+ / 0-)

    but I think of this as more abstract: to me, "master's tools" means that in fighting radically racist, misogynist, and homophobic system, we can't utilize racist, misogynist and/or homophobic concepts in the process.  So, for example, we shouldn't agitate for a female politician by noting that a female candidate "has balls" and "is tough."  Because that legitimizes violence as an appropriate and useful tool to sieze power.  That's an example of the mistake of attempting to use the master's tools to dismantle the master's house.

    If you're walking down the right path and you're willing to keep walking, eventually you'll make progress.--Nobel Peace Prize Recipient President Obama

    by GN1927 on Tue Nov 17, 2009 at 06:36:31 AM PST

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    •  Good reply (6+ / 0-)

      and I agree with you that the intent behind the quote is probably more abstract than I allowed. However, language in and of itself is already one of the Master's tools. Levi-Strauss would say that it's not the tools you have that make a difference, it's what you do with them. It's not the engineer who enacts change, it's the "bricoleur," the jack-of-all-trades with limited resources who uses those resources creatively.

      •  That's a great point (5+ / 0-)

        I just am of the camp that certain expressions cannot be stripped of their regressive meaning.  For instance, I think that "pimp," even used in a benign manner, carries the baggage of the abusive pimp-ho relationship.

        ...it's not the tools you have that make a difference, it's what you do with them.

        But that's an excellent, excellent point.

        If you're walking down the right path and you're willing to keep walking, eventually you'll make progress.--Nobel Peace Prize Recipient President Obama

        by GN1927 on Tue Nov 17, 2009 at 06:47:34 AM PST

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    •  Credit to rserven for pointing this link (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      soothsayer99

      here but Emi Koyama at eminism.org blog sharing her thought stated

      When Audre said "master's tools," what she was referring to was white, middle-class, straight feminists' unwillingness to recognize the differences among women along the lines of race, class, sexuality, etc.

      I thought worth mentioning it here since the topic of "master's tools" is mentioned but the whole diary was powerful...worth the read!

      ...We have many more issues that bind us together than separate us!

      by ThisIsMyTime on Wed Nov 18, 2009 at 10:31:33 AM PST

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