Direct and indirect categorism

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Categorism can be direct or indirect. This can be divided into focus, involvement and target-persons.


Focus is how the category itself is being targeted. Direct focus goes directly for the target, while indirect focus undermines it indirectly. For example: It is direct focus homophobia to make the claim that same sex relationships are not real love. It is indirect focus homophobia to make the claim that real love is between a man and a woman. Both cases builds a discourse where heterosexuals are constructed as normats (the normative category of people) while homosexuals are constructed as antinormats (the supposed “deviation” through which the norm is defined). The second case also build a normat-universialization: something which poses as being a universal truth/inclusion, when it is actually a construction of a normat category as being supposedly universal.


Involvement is how a person doing the categorism is handling it. Direct involvement is to actively take a position, while indirect involvement is to passively uphold a discourse or norm or other structure. Passive action through inaction, if you will. For example: It is direct involvement homophobia to personally take either of the two positions mentioned under ”focus” above. It is indirect involvement homophobia to implicitly accept such claims to dismiss demands for recognition of same sex relationships.


Target is a matter of what persons are being targeted by categorism against a certain category of people. Direct target is to go after the persons who belong, or seem to belong, to the targeted category. Indirect target is to go after the people who associate with the direct targets or who simply refuse to join campaigns against them. For example: It is direct target homophobia to go after a gay person for being gay. It is indirect target homophobia to go after anyone who refuse to denounce that same gay person or to denounce gay people in general.