They split and devoured SDS so easily because they capitalized on a widespread self-doubt; with a rush they occupied a vacuum of identity and strategy, virtually without opposition. Identity politics swallowed itself.
Todd Gitlin: Toward a new new left, in: Partisan Review 39 (1972), S. 454-461, hier S. 455; auch in: Robert Paul Wolff (Hg.): 1984 Revisited. Prospects for American Politics, New York 1973, S. 27.

Our politics evolve from a healthy love for ourselves, our sisters, and our community which allows us to continue our struggle and work. This focusing upon our own oppression is embodied in the concept of identity politics. We believe that the most profound and potentially most radical politics come directly out of our own identity, as opposed to working to end somebody else’s oppression. In the case of Black women this is a particularly repugnant, dangerous, threatening, and therefore revolutionary concept because it is obvious from looking at all the political movements that have preceded us that anyone is more worthy of liberation than ourselves. We reject pedestals, queenhood, and walking ten paces behind. To be recognized as human, levelly human, is enough.
Combahee River Collective Black Feminist Statement, 1977; http://historyisaweapon.com/defcon1/combrivercoll.html

Two black women from the Combahee River Collective, Boston, Massachusetts, sat before an Ithica College audience and told their “herstories.” Beverly Smith had been active in the civil rights movement and developed a deep racial consciousness when most students at the University of Chicago were embroiled in protests against the war in Viet Nam. Despite her raised racial consciousness she described herself as “confused” when she attended her first feminist meeting in 1967. Another “herstory” came from Lorraine Bethel, a product of an all-girls -high school, which she found “supportive” in terms of female companionship and “politicizing” in terms of her black identity. […] As part of the collective, Smith and Bethel practice what they call “identity politics:” They concede that it is difficult for unoppressed groups to understand this kind of political stance. But with personal lives affected by racial, sexual, economic, class and heterosexual oppression, they feel bound to direct their political lives in these areas. They also realize that no one else can be expected to fight their battles or completely understand their politics. No one else understands the “multi-layered texture” of black women’s lives–the “smart-ugly” label feminists live with or the love they have nurtured for each other, manifested in lives affected by racial, sexual, economic, class and heterosexual oppression, they feel bound to direct the “culturally coded language[“] they use in their personal communication. “We are the only ones who can work for our liberation,” they say.
Anonymus: Boston black women organize, in: Big Mama Rag 6 (4) (1978), S. 4.

Political activism among the handicapped and former mental patients […] exemplifies a type of politics which we will term identity politics. Among its goals are forging an image or conception of self and propagating this self to attentive publics. Not only is the fashioning of collective identity an explicit articulated goal of the politized disabled, but the very act of political participation in itself induces others to impute certain characteristics to the activist.
Renee R. Anspach: From stigma to identity politics: Political activism among the physically disabled and former mental patients, in: Social Science and Medicine 13A (1979), S. 765-773, hier S. 766.

At the heart of the imperial cultural enterprise I analyzed in Orientalism and also in my new book, was a politics of identity. That politics has needed to assume, indeed needed firmly to believe, that what was true about Orientals or Africans was not however true about or for Europeans. When a French or German scholar tried to identify the main characteristics of, for instance, the Chinese mind, the work was only partly intended to do that; it was also intended to show how different the Chinese mind was from the Western mind. […]
What interests me in the politics of identity that informed imperialism in its global phase is that just as natives were considered to belong to a different category—racial or geographical—from that of the Western white man, it also became true that in the great anti-imperialist revolt represented by decolonization this same category was mobilized around, and formed the resisting identity of, the revolutionaries. This was the case everywhere in the Third World. Its most celebrated instance is the concept of négritude, as developed intellectually and poeticans by Aimé Césaire, Leopold Senghor, and, in English. W. E. B. DuBois. If blacks had once been stigmatized and given inferior status to whites, then it has since become necessary not to deny blackness, and not to aspire to whiteness, but to accept and celebrate blackness, to give it the dignity of poetic as well as metaphysical status. Thus négritude acquired positive Being where before it had been a mark of degradation and inferiority. Much the same revaluation of the native particularity occurred in India, in many parts of the Islamic world. China, Japan, Indonesia. and the Philippines, where the denied or repressed native essence emerged as the focus of, and even the basis for, nationalist recovery.
Edward Said: The politics of knowledge, in: Raritan. A Quarterly Review 11 (1991), S. 17-31, hier S. 21; 22.

On the identity model […] a feminist politics of recognition means identity politics. Without doubt, this identity model contains some genuine insights concerning the psychological effects of sexism. Yet, as I have argued elsewhere, it is deficient on at least two major counts. First, it tends to reify femininity and to obscure crosscutting axes of subordination. As a result, it often recycles dominant gender stereotypes, while promoting separatism and political correctness. Second, the identity model treats sexist misrecognition as a freestanding cultural harm. As a result, it obscures the latter’s links to sexist maldistribution, thereby impeding efforts to combat both aspects of sexism simultaneously. For these reasons, feminists need an alternative approach. The concepts of gender and justice proposed here imply an alternative feminist politics of recognition. From this perspective, recognition is a question of social status. What requires recognition is not feminine identity but the status of women as full partners in social interaction. Misrecognition, accordingly, does not mean the depreciation and deformation of femininity. Rather, it means social subordination in the sense of being prevented from participating as a peer in social life. To redress the injustice requires a feminist politics of recognition, to be sure, but this does not mean identity politics. On the status model, rather, it means a politics aimed at overcoming subordination by establishing women as full members of society, capable of participating on a par with men. […]
misrecognition constitutes a serious violation of justice. Wherever and however it occurs, a claim for recognition is in order. But note precisely what this means: aimed not at valorizing femininity, but rather at overcoming subordination, claims for recognition seek to establish women as full partners in social life, able to interact with men as peers.
Nancy Fraser: Fortunes of Feminism. From State-Managed Capitalism to Neoliberal Crisis, New York 2013, S. 168; 169.

Wenn das Combahee River Collective zum Schluss kommt, es sei für ökonomisch prekarisierte Schwarze Frauen ein Wagnis, die eigenen Erfahrungen zum Ausgangspunkt politischen Handelns zu machen, hat dies nichts mit der Befindlichkeitsrhetorik zu tun, als die Identitätspolitik oft dargestellt wird, sehr viel aber mit dem Überleben von Menschen in einer Gesellschaft, die deren Leben kaum Wert beimisst. […] Sich in dieser Situation auf eine eigene Identität zu beziehen oder, genauer, eine eigene Identität zu erfinden und zu behaupten, heisst nichts anderes, als sich dieser Auslöschung zu widersetzen. Identitätspolitik bedeutet dann, den eigenen Erfahrungen durch gegenseitige Anerkennung Bedeutung zu verleihen und sie zum Ausgangspunkt einer Gesellschaftskritik zu machen, in der die eigenen Belange nicht negiert, sondern artikulierbar werden. Identitätspolitik hat folglich eine weitreichende epistemische Dimension: Sie bringt Erkenntnisse hervor, die in der bestehenden Wissensordnung nicht zum Vorschein kommen, diese aber weitreichend erschüttern können. […] entgegen der Vorstellung, Identitätspolitik sei die Kultivierung reiner Selbstbezüglichkeit, erörtert das Kollektiv ausgiebig die Möglichkeit von Koalitionen, in denen das revolutionäre Wissen Schwarzer Feministinnen nicht ignoriert, sondern anerkannt und genutzt wird.
Patricia Purtschert: Es gibt kein Jenseits der Identitätspolitik. Lernen vom Combahee River Collective, in: Widerspruch.
Beiträge zu sozialistischer Politik 36 (2017), S. 15-22, hier S. 17f.

The rise of identity politics in modern liberal democracies is one of the chief threats that they face, and unless we can work our way back to more universal understandings of human dignity, we will doom ourselves to continuing conflict. […]
Identity politics […] engenders its own dynamic, by which societies divide themselves into smaller and smaller groups by virtue of their particular “lived experience” of victimization. […]
The retreat on both sides into ever narrower identities threatens the possibility of deliberation and collective action by the society as a whole. Down this road lies, ultimately, state breakdown and failure. […] if the logic of identity politics is to divide societies into ever smaller, self-regarding groups, it is also possible to create identities that are broader and more integrative. One does not have to deny the potentialities and lived experiences of individuals to recognize that they can also share values and aspirations with much broader circles of citizens.
Francis Fukuyama: Identity. The Demand for Dignity and the Politics of Resentment.
New York 2018, S. xvi; 164; 165f.

Identitätspolitik, Begriff der cultural studies, worunter emanzipatorische Bewegungen diskriminierter sozialer Gruppen verstanden werden, wie etwa die schwarze Bürgerrechtsbewegung in den USA. I. wird durch die Betroffenen (Frauen, Schwule, Hindus usw.) betrieben, z. B. auch indem stigmatisierende Zuschreibungen („Nigger“, „Kanake“) übernommen werden, um deren Bedeutung umzukehren („Selbstkanakisierung“ Resignifikation). I. kann zur Assimilation an die Identität der Mehrheit führen, wie es z. B. den Verfechtern der „Homo-Ehe“ vorgeworfen wurde. Auch kann eine kulturelle Besonderheit in der I. derart überhöht werden, dass sie separatistische und fundamentalistische Zuge annimmt. Die Geltungskraft sozialer Unterscheidungsmerkmale (Geschlecht, Hautfarbe etc.) wird von der I. trotz Erfolgen in der Anerkennung oft verstärkt, indem die I. aus diesen zugewiesenen negativen Identitäten heraus operiert und damit die unterdrückende gesellschaftliche Hierarchie und die Opferrolle bestätigt. Das kann dann z. B. zu den sog. Quotenfrauen in Organisationen führen, den token.
Daniela Klimke: [Art.] Identitätspolitik, in: dies. et al. (Hg.): Lexikon zur Soziologie, 6. Aufl., Wiesbaden 2020, S. 327.



Karen Gloy und Michael Klessmann: Identität, in: Theologische Realenzyklopädie, Bd. 16, Berlin 1987, S. 25-32.

Bernd Estel: Identität, in: Handbuch religionswissenschaftlicher Grundbegriffe, Bd. 3, Stuttgart 1993, S. 193-210.

Philip Gleason: Identifying identity. A Semantic History (1938), in: Werner Sollors (Hg.): Theories of Ethnicity. A Classical Reader, New York 1996, S. 460-488.

Thomas Meyer: Identitätspolitik. Vom Missbrauch kultureller Unterschiede, Frankfurt am Main 2002.

Volker Schubert: Identität, in: Historisch-kritisches Wörterbuch des Marxismus, 6/I, Hamburg 2004, Sp. 653-664.

Claudia Breger: Identität, in: Christina von Braun (Hg.): Gender@Wissen. Ein Handbuch der Gender-Theorien, Köln 2005, S. 47-65.

Anke Langner: Identität, in: Markus Dederich und Wolfgang Jantzen (Hg.): Behinderung und Anerkennung, Stuttgart 2009, S. 179-183.

Mark Lilla: The Once and Future Liberal. After Identity Politics, New York 2017.

Francis Fukuyama: Identity. The Demand for Dignity and the Politics of Resentment. New York 2018.

Lea Susemichel und Jens Kastner: Identitätspolitiken. Konzepte und Kritiken in Geschichte und Gegenwart der Linken, Münster 2018.

Hans-Jürgen Bieling (Hg.): Identitätspolitik, Frankfurt am Main 2018.

Bundeszentrale für Politische Bildung (Hg.): Identitätspolitik, Bonn 2019.

Ulrich Baer: What Snowflakes Get Right. Free Speech, Truth, and Equality on Campus, Oxford 2019.

Oliver Hidalgo: Kritik der Identitätspolitik in der Demokratie, in: Ethik und Gesellschaft 1/2020 /https://dx.doi.org/10.18156/eug-1-2020-art-6).