The richest girl in town. (fightingwords) wrote,
The richest girl in town.
fightingwords

On my mind a lot lately.

So, I was going to ask the question, "What is the difference between identity and community?", but I felt like I was being somewhat disingenuous in doing so because I've been thinking about that question quite a lot in the last week, mostly in terms of how children of LGBTQ parents are portrayed in the media and whose voices are heard. Then today, I stumbled upon the brilliant tuckova's latest post on the exact same topic (or, at least, she seems to be answering my question to some extent without knowing it was being asked). And anyway, I already have at least one answer of my own.

Identity is some defining characteristic--it can be a big thing or a little one, though I suspect its importance to one's sense of self or to others is a matter of how important that characteristic is to society as a whole. Ours is a society in which gender is a hugely defining characteristic, along with parenthood, and age. Sharing any of these characteristics, though, doesn't make for a community. It makes for an affinity group.

Affinity groups do not assume that each person present has had the same experiences around the shared identity. Likewise, they do not assume that each person will feel the same level of comfort, pride, or acceptance of that identity, particularly if the identity is one which is targeted by society for violence, the deprivation of civil rights, and other types of oppression.

So what is community, then? Community is intentional. Community is built and requires work on the part of its members for its growth and healthiness.

To be continued.
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  • My tweets

    Mon, 14:08: @ iamjohnoliver look what you did. https://t.co/1aFZq1nRC7 Tue, 10:34: RT @ natalie_allison: Now on the Tennessee House…

  • My tweets

    Fri, 15:33: RT @ emilyst: on the subject of Basecamp offering severance to people who wanna get out, the phrase “ethical cleansing” comes to…

  • My tweets

    Wed, 22:49: RT @ AlexisDraws: Was looking for an old photo, found this old drawing instead https://t.co/U5gBRU9Dqn