What (where) is privilege?

Maybe this is because of my background, but privilege is easily defined in my mind. To have privilege is to have an upper hand in something due to an inherent or externally perceived part of yourself. What I am interested in, though, is where privilege is. Can privilege exist where it is not perceived? Does privilege only exist where it creates a palpable result? These are questions I am still dealing with myself, but if I stop and assume for a minute that privilege always exists, a location begins to materialize. It seems to me, especially after reading Beauvoir’s discussion of male being the neutral, that privilege is located anywhere there is a group that is treated as the standard and another (or several others) that is positioned as the other. The locus of privilege, then would be in the power disparity between these groups.


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