By N. Erevelles
Disability and distinction in international Contexts explores the probabilities and obstacles re-theorizing incapacity utilizing ancient materialism within the interdisciplinary contexts of social concept, cultural reports, social and schooling coverage, feminist ethics, and theories of citizenship.
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Extra resources for Disability and Difference in Global Contexts: Enabling a Transformative Body Politic
Here, disability is again not just a linguistic trope, but the actual bloodied Disability as Becoming 41 markings on the black body. ” The anatomical specifications of rupture, of altered human tissue, take on the objective description of laboratory prose—eyes beaten out, arms, backs, skulls branded, a left jaw, a right ankle, punctured; teeth missing, as the calculated work of iron, whips, chains, knives, the canine patrol, the bullet. (p. 67) While Spillers describes these markings on the flesh as “the concentration of ethnicity” in a culture “whose state apparatus, including judges, attorneys, ‘owners,’ ‘soul drivers,’ ‘overseers,’ and ‘men of God,’ apparently colludes with a protocol of ‘search and destroy’” (p.
The problem with “horizontal rhizomatic proliferation” is that it is rendered inadequate in the historical context of transnational capitalism, where bodies encounter each other often in violent collision such that captivity and mutilation are no longer metaphors, but instead inform a brutal materiality that foregrounds the hierarchical binary of Master/slave. Here, Deleuze and Guattari’s (1983)“[d]esiring-machines” (p. 5) cannot support the seamless horizontal current of flow between intercorporeal entities, now interrupted by hierarchical social relationships where productive desire that is constitutive of some bodies is enabled through the consumption of the seared, divided, ripped-apart, mutilated flesh of other bodies.
In the example above, the constitutive effects of race, disability, and the market coalesce in complex ways to effectively unravel the boundaries between bodies/subjects and destabilize their internal organizations so as to further enable their becoming-other. One of the outcomes of this becoming was that this captive flesh was now reconfigured into its atomized constituents, and in the process, enacted an objectification so complete that the “entire captive community becomes a living laboratory” (Spillers, 1987, p.