Quantifying intersectionality: An important advancement for health inequality research.


Journal Article

BACKGROUND: Intersectionality is a powerful theoretical framework that is useful in describing the lived experiences of people with multiple marginalized statuses. By focusing on power and domination (e.g., racism, sexism), and the ways in which they are inextricably linked and mutually constructing, researchers can better understand experiences of all people, not just those with one or more master statuses. This framework is valuable in understanding how discrimination relates to health and in attempts to reduce health disparities. RATIONALE: Population health researchers have only recently begun to consider intersectionality in their theories and measurement (Bowleg, 2012), and have been hindered by the challenges of measuring and analyzing experiences of discrimination in intersectional ways. We need new methodological strategies to enable empirical research to catch up with theoretical advances. CONCLUSIONS: The pair of articles in this issue by Scheim and Bauer (2019), and Bauer and Scheim (2019), offer important new data collection instruments and data analytic strategies to advance our ability to measure discrimination intersectionally. When using these new tools, it is important to not lose track of the origins and historical underpinnings of intersectionality and to focus on the transformative goal of intersectionality to eradicate inequality.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Richman, LS; Zucker, AN

Published Date

  • April 2019

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 226 /

Start / End Page

  • 246 - 248

PubMed ID

  • 30733077

Pubmed Central ID

  • 30733077

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1873-5347

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.socscimed.2019.01.036


  • eng

Conference Location

  • England