This article describes the meta-theoretical and theoretical foundations of one approach to critique that moves through up to eight analytically distinct steps. This critique begins with the identification of specific discourses and discursive practices and moves progressively toward a critique of ideology and domination and then to a critique of the factors and actors that, through diverse mechanisms of variation, selection and retention, reproduce these ideological effects and patterns of domination as a basis for proposing and acting upon emancipatory projects that involve a variable mix of reform and revolution. An important part of these procedures is to deconstruct and demystify sedimented, naturalized discourses and social practices and to propose alternatives based on explicitly stated principles of justice and fairness.