Crip Intrusions: Affect-ive Readings of Disability
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I will engage with affective experiences of disability that are silenced within dominant discourses of disability theory. In order to tease out the particularities of the silences and absences I aim to address, I will examine various instances of life writing/life narrative, focusing on the tellings of disabled, queer, and/or racialized writers. Within my research, there is a great deal of motion and overlap between primary and secondary sources, creative and scholarly texts. Much of the theory I engage with writes and/or performs affects and sensations at the same time as it explores their content and form (or lack thereof). Likewise, much of the life writing I engage with has explicitly theoretical implications. In keeping with a feminist tradition of appreciating the situated-ness of bodies of/and knowledge, my research engages with work exhibiting forms of embodied situated-ness that is mobile, shifting, and prone to slippage. With this commitment in mind, I explore various forms of “life writing” or “life narrative,” understood as attempts to communicate bodies and selves within and perhaps beyond particular social, political, economic contexts. I focus on the ways in which processes of meaning making, communication, and engagement are themselves affective encounters among bodies. While dominant processes of life writing often function as means of communicating, and in the process constructing, a particular self, I will read these texts for the moments where affects erupt into the text—where any search for a stable self to tell is abandoned and the complicated, messy aspects of corporeal experiences emerge.