Episode 155 - The more we get together: Talking intersectionality in activism

The rabble podcast network offers an alternative take on politics, entertainment, society, stories, community and life in general. All opinions belong to the podcaster; however, podcasters are expected to adhere to our guidelines. We welcome new podcasters -- contact us for details.

Please chip in to support more articles like this. Support rabble.ca for as little as $5 per month!

rabble radio logo

(1:44 - 12:22) Intersectionality. It’s a big word, and it has to be, because it is the idea that we can unite our social justice struggles, that it is impossible and unwise to separating them into single-issue campaigns. For activists, intersectionality is both a gift and a challenge. Sharon Smith is a feminist socialist activist and the writer of Subterranean Fire: A History of Working-Class radicalism in the United States. She spoke about intersectionality at the Socialism 2013 Conference in Chicago, Illinois. rabble.ca's F-Word podcast was there to record it. Here’s part of her address.

(13:25 - 19:45) Dalhousie University made the news this year for creating gender-neutral washrooms. That’s just one example of success in activismthat seeks to create safe spaces for trans people on campus. It’s part of an upswing in community activism around Halifax for gender justice, which uses a model that understands that work for social justice occurs on many intersecting levels such as race, class, sexuality, gender, ability, and more. Scott Neigh talked with Jude Ashburn, a queer and non-binary transperson who has worked for a number of inclusivity initiatives in Halifax. Ashburn has also been an organizer with Rad Pride Halifax, an alternative to the city’s more mainstream Pride celebration. Scott started the interview by asking Jude about Gender justice.

(20:58 - 28:30) Well, no matter where you choose to focus your personal radical action, and who you are, you will probably end up paying taxes. And while politicians love to promise us lower tax rates, and comedians love to joke about the taxman, there are economists across Canada who want to tell you why taxes are great. They gathered together for a panel hosted by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives and sponsored by rabble.ca. The panel  was excellent -- I know because I was there. It featured economists Armine Yalnizyan, Trish Hennessey, Yves-Lynne Couturier, and Toby Sanger. You can hear the entire presentation over at the Needs No Introduction podcast at rabble.ca/podcasts, but we thought we’d bring you a little bit of it here. The special guest speaker that evening was former privy council clerk and the author of  “Tax is not a four letter word” Alex Himelfarb. Here is part of his address:

Thank you for reading this story…

More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable.

rabble.ca has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.

So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.

And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.


We welcome your comments! rabble.ca embraces a pro-human rights, pro-feminist, anti-racist, queer-positive, anti-imperialist and pro-labour stance, and encourages discussions which develop progressive thought. Our full comment policy can be found here. Learn more about Disqus on rabble.ca and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:


  • Tell the truth and avoid rumours.
  • Add context and background.
  • Report typos and logical fallacies.
  • Be respectful.
  • Respect copyright - link to articles.
  • Stay focused. Bring in-depth commentary to our discussion forum, babble.


  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
  • Post spam.
  • Engage trolls. Flag suspect activity instead.