Microaggression theory: check thy privilege!

[Note: this is likely to be a dynamic document, but any edits will be explained.]

The recent years have highlighted a number of incidents, mainly on US campuses, where social justice activists have rallied against the insidious power of microaggressions (MAs). Microaggression theory (or MAT, as we’ll call it here) finds it’s most comprehensive and cited form in the 2010 book “Microaggressions in Everyday Life” (MIEL) by Derald Wing Sue. The implicating of microaggressions in human discourse has reached a zenith. Modern “progressive” social activism often implicates MAs in its explanation for the genesis and maintenance of social inequality. Within these social justice movements, the notion that people in social minority groups are subject to “everyday verbal, nonverbal, and environmental slights, snubs, or insults, whether intentional or unintentional, that communicate hostile, derogatory, or negative messages to target persons based solely upon their marginalized group membership” (Sue, 2010) appears to be taken as axiomatic.

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