I cam across this illustration of how sexism and class differences are linked in the Wikipedia article on honor killing:
There is a strong positive correlation between violence against women, and women’s social power and equality; and a baseline of development, associated with access to basic resources, health care, and human capital, such as literacy – as research by Richard G. Wilkinson shows. In a male dominated society, there is more inequality between men, and women lose out not just physically and economically, but crucially because men who feel subordinated will often try to regain a sense of their authority in turn by excessive subordination of those below them, ie women. (Interestingly, he says that in male-dominated societies, not only do women suffer more violence, and worse health: but so do men.)
Racial prejudice and inequality exacerbates the mix as well, as seen in the plight of Native American women, who are two and half times more likely to be raped than the average American woman.
It’s important to fight against sexism directly, but it’s also good to realize that fighting against any kind or discrimination and inequality is a fight for the rights of women and men, whites and blacks, straights and gays, poor and rich and everyone in between and all around.