Societal Oppression

Topics: Sociology, Racism, Discrimination, Psychology, Stereotype, Race / Pages: 3 (601 words) / Published: Oct 24th, 2017
In 2007, Rita Hardiman and Bailey W. Jackson published a piece of work explaining the conceptual model behind the phenomenon of oppression in society. In their work, Hardiman and Jackson (2007) explain oppression as a system where individual participants of society are subjected to a position of the “dominant” or “subordinate” role. The “dominant” role that oppresses and devalues is referred to as the “agent” and the “subordinate” role that is oppressed and devalued is referred to as the “target”. The agent is characterized as a person who has the power to determine the acceptable norm, is privileged, and is endowed in a sense of internalized superiority. The target is characterized as the social minority that is systematically vulnerable to “exploitation, marginalization…and violence” (Hardiman and Jackson, 2007). Societal oppression is often generational, which ingrains cultural values into both the agent and the target.

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