Standpoint Theory

The depiction above is an example to describe Standpoint Theory. Standpoint Theory was conceived by the sociologist and feminist Dorothy Smith who defined the idea as “what one knows is affected by where one stands (one’s subject position) in society.” She argued that the only way that we can see the world around us is through one lens and that is out standpoint.” She breaks this theory’s definition down into three parts: there is no objective knowledge, no two people have the same exact view, and we should not take our personal standpoint for granted. She conceived this theory due to her personal experiences in sociology as the discipline was created by white, middle-class, males who only saw their own relevance in society. She argued that their failure to realize that they were creating a masculine discipline made the field bias as it excluded women and their standpoints.

The picture above show how different women in different societies have different standpoint on a similar issue. This shows Smith’s idea that not two people have the exact standpoint, as each of the characters are advocating for women’s rights but are advocating for a different right in their respective country. It show how women in America are privileged in the manner that they are allowed to vote and and fight for more of their rights while women in other countries are just fighting to feed their children and be able to see their children more often. It shows women in America not to take their stance in society for granted as others around the world have different struggles they deal with everyday. The picture does not only have to be geared towards women, as it applies to all those who are not part of the superior race and  gender.

1) How can standpoint theory explain why movements and protests in society often fail or succeed as those protesting do not have the same standpoint view in society?

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