Sex Roles

, Volume 59, Issue 5–6, pp 301–311

Gender: An Intersectionality Perspective

Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s11199-008-9501-8

Cite this article as:
Shields, S.A. Sex Roles (2008) 59: 301. doi:10.1007/s11199-008-9501-8


Intersectionality, the mutually constitutive relations among social identities, is a central tenet of feminist thinking and has transformed how gender is conceptualized in research. In this special issue, we focus on the intersectionality perspective in empirical research on gender. Our goal is to offer a “best practices” resource that provides models for when and how intersectionality can inform theory and be incorporated into empirical research on psychological questions at individual, interpersonal, and social structural levels. I briefly summarize the development of the intersectionality perspective, and then review how the realization of its promise has been diverted by preoccupation with intersectionality as a methodological challenge. I conclude with a discussion of why intersectionality is an urgent issue for researchers invested in promoting positive social change.


Feminist psychology Social identity Intersectionality theory Hybridity Feminist theory 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyThe Pennsylvania State UniversityUniversity ParkUSA

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