Matters may have been very different in a feudal or a despotic-theocratic world, but we don't live in one of those. Here's one view.Zhao said:i find interesting the notion that it is not race, but class, that is the central dynamic of inequality. and that race conflict is actually staged entertainment and distraction for the masses...
What is the relationship between race, gender, and class?
The power analysis version of the primacy of class takes the economy as the primacy expression of power in capitalist society. In that sense, then, class struggle is the most important power struggle because success in the class struggle impacts a greater number of social processes and power struggles than any other. This version amounts to the view that class is primary in that class struggle is the most important political project in the present. That is, the most important project is the abolition of class via struggle at the economic base.
Class processes are the primary form which processes of power take in capitalist society, such that class struggle is not merely one form of struggle among others. This was Marx’s view, though Marx, at least in the Contribution to the Critique of Hegel’s Philosophy of Right, overstated this point. Marx held that the working class “has radical chains.” This means that the working class’s grievance against capitalism “has a universal character because its sufferings are universal, and which does not claim a particular redress because the wrong which is done to it is not a particular wrong, but wrong in general.” The class “claims no traditional status but only a human status.” The class is thus “totally opposed” to all forms of oppression or power process. This means that the working class “cannot emancipate itself without emancipating itself from all other spheres of society, without, therefore, emancipating all these other spheres” (Marx-Engels Reader, 64).
Radical here means “to grasp things by the root” (Marx-Engels Reader, 60). For Marx, “radical chains” are chains which are, so to speak, chained at the root of all forms of social inequality and oppression. Thus, the severing of radical chains will sever all forms of chaining of human beings. The proletariat’s severing of its chains will sever all chains. In other words, Marx held that the end of the class process or class processes will end all forms of power processes, or at least all forms of undesirable power processes.
This is an overstatement on Marx’s part. There is no reason why the end of class will end all other forms of oppression or undesirable power process. If class is abolished it is entirely possible that racism, sexism, homophobia, and other contradictions or reactionary ideas and practices will still exist. The important point remains, however, that these other contradictions or power processes will not, however, have any economic expression. In that sense, class can still be held to be primary.
If class is abolished via the abolition of capitalism, abolition of the appropriation of surplus labor, much of the teeth of other contradictions will be abolished. Gaybashing, racist violence, sexual assault, domestic violence and other atrocities may all still exist in post-capitalist society. There will not, however, be economic power present which serves to reinforce them. Companies will no longer be able to decide whether or not same-sex partners shall be covered on the company insurance plan, because healthcare will be provided to all. Racists will not be able to appeal to the lie of immigrants lowering wages, because wages will not exist. Abusive partners will not be able to use their partners’ economic dependence on them to trap the partner in the violent relationship. Employers and privileged employees will not be able to use their power in the workplace to provide them with the power to inflict sexual harassment with impunity upon those below them in the workplace hierarchy, because the institution of the waged workplace will not exist.
Any preferential/discriminatory practices in hiring, firing, wage levels, housing, access to healthcare, or other forms of inequality in the distribution of means of subsistence will not exist after capitalism is abolished. This is the meaning of the slogan Marx liked, describing communism as “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need!” (Marx-Engels Reader, 531). There may well still be contradictions, reactionary ideas and practices remaining after the abolition of capitalism. These will need to be dealt with. With the end of capitalism, there will be more resources available for education to erode some of the bases for reactionary ideas. In addition, because we will no longer be having so much of our time stolen by the capitalist class’s forcing of surplus labor upon us, we will all have more time available to support those victimized by reactionaries and more time to deal in the requisite fashion with reactionaries.