Vine Deloria's incisive analysis of institutional racism in western culture applies equally well to the related problem of institutional sexism. Both women, and minorities especially individual members of minority racial groups who are immediately recognizable by members of the dominant white culture - belong to a caste rather than a class in western society. As such, we are all subjected by the traditions of white male philosophical. and intellectual processes as much as by existing socio-political institutions to the different varieties of exclusion, co-optation and disempowerment that Deloria outlines. In the past decade particularly, women's situation in American political and institutional life has replicated the stasis and frustration experienced by racial minorities for many years preceding.

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