Encyclopediaof—isms

Dichotomy

A dichotomy means a division into two parts that are exclusive opposed or contradictory: an object can be either one or the other, not both nor neither.

This dichotomy as a oversimplified classification of the rich, ambiguous and stratified identities that we are, is ever present in the way we deal with our daily life and how we assess ourselves and the other. The analysis of the archive ‘Everyday People Every Day’ shows that in this present day and age, we still think in this system of exclusion: in ‘color’ between ‘black’ and ‘white’, in ‘nationality’ between ‘native’ and ‘non-native’, in ‘gender’ between ‘male’ and ‘female’, in ‘sexuality’ between ‘homo’ and ‘hetero’ and in ‘geography’ between ‘western’ and ‘non-western’. Being part of the larger group, and therefore not of the minority, provokes a strategy of separation between the ‘normal’ and the ‘abnormal’.