Those of us who stand outside the circle of this society’s definition of acceptable women; those of us who have been forged into the crucibles of difference—those who are poor, who are lesbians, who are Black, who are older—know that survival is not an academic skill. It is learning how to stand alone, unpopular and sometimes reviled, and how to make common cause with those others identified as outside the structures in order to define and seek a world in which we can all flourish. It is learning how to take our differences and make them strengths. For the master’s tools will never dismantle the master’s house. They may allow us temporarily to beat him at his own game, but they will never enable us to bring about genuine change. And this fact is only threatening to those women who still define the master’s house as their only source of support.
Audre Lorde, “The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House” from Sister Outsider: Essays and Speeches