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Intersectionality's Faceless Aesthetic | OnlySubs with James Lindsay, Ep. 56

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New Discourses Logo  fiber_manual_record  Aug 27th, 2021


Something I am noticing more and more lately is the use of a faceless aesthetic in intersectional art, and it’s starting to creep me out. At first, I didn’t think much of it. It has a weird ring of corporate-bureaucratic style to it, where features are intentionally left off avatar-style images so that the characters are less specifically identifiable and more generally identifiable. So what? But then I saw this art increasingly appearing in Woke-related presentations, including those of Black Lives Matter and other “diversity” imagery. Even the Kamala Harris cookies (in her own likeness) she passed out on Air Force Two bore this facelessness. This aesthetic fits intersectionality, though. Under intersectionality, people are who they are positionally against systems of power (and whether or not they speak “authentically” from that position). There are no individuals, just identities as collectives, and this style of art seems much less accidental when you realize it portrays precisely that. In this episode of James Lindsay OnlySubs, my subscribers-only podcast, I talk a little about my feelings about this new aesthetic in terms of intersectionality and why I really don’t like it.

-James Lindsay

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