Things That Make You Go Hmmm: Unmaking of the Racialized Self in a Graduate School Classroom


  • Manjeet Birk University of British Columbia


Intersectionality, Identity, Race


Using storytelling methodologies and counter storytelling I use three situations within my life as a racialized woman to exemplify the practices and symptoms of institutionalized intersectionality.   Using my stories and the many useful critiques of intersectionality, I discuss how institutionalized intersectionality is failing marginalized women because institutions are co opting “outsider” language and imposing it on bodies of their choosing.

Résumé À l’aide de la notion des contre-récits de la théorie critique de la race, j’utilise trois situations au sein de ma vie en tant que femme racialisée dans le monde universitaire pour illustrer les pratiques et les symptômes de l’intersectionnalité institutionnalisée. À l’aide de mes expériences et des nombreuses critiques utiles de l’intersectionnalité, je discute de la façon dont l’intersectionnalité institutionnalisée trahit les femmes marginalisées parce que les institutions cooptent le langage « marginal » et l’imposent aux organes de leur choix.


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Author Biography

Manjeet Birk, University of British Columbia

Manjeet Birk has been living on the traditional unceded territory of the Coast Salish people most of her life. She has worked, studied and played across the world but a piece of her always remains on the west coast. Manjeet completed her Bachelors of Arts degree from Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario in Philosophy and Women’s Studies and went on to complete a Masters of Arts degree from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto. She is currently a PhD Candidate in the Centre for Cross Faculty Inquiry in Education at the University of British Columbia. Her research interests focus on women’s organizing, racialized and Indigenous girls and social justice.  With a lifetime of experience organizing, troubling and challenging systems, Manjeet is always looking for new ways to re-conceptualize a more beautiful world.


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