Consciousness-raising: Is it really real?

26 Apr

New York Times’ columnist Stanley Fish writes an excellent piece about consciousness-raising and how our brains deal with opening up to be sympathetic to different groups, be they racial or socioeconomic or whatever. Here’s the part that really got us:

And I say this even though each movement on the intellectual left — feminism, postmodernism, critical race theory, critical legal studies — believes that the thesis generates a politics of liberation. It doesn’t; it doesn’t generate anything. Consciousness-raising has always been a false lure, although changes in consciousness are always possible. It is just that you can’t design them or will them into being; there is no method that will free us from the conceptual limitations within which we make invidious distinctions and perform acts of blindness. The best we can do is wait for a tree to talk to us.

BONUS: There’s a ton of Wizard of Oz references in this piece, so maybs you should read it just for those….

This post is brought to you by Rachel, who may be in love with Mr. Fish and/or liberalism.


One Response to “Consciousness-raising: Is it really real?”


  1. Get yo jeans on, gurl « mislabeled - April 26, 2011

    […] part of Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month. And since we have to do more than just raise consciousness, you best be wearing your […]

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