Animacies Biopolitics, Racial Mattering, and Queer Affect

ISBN-10: 0822352729
ISBN-13: 9780822352723
Edition: 2012
Authors: Mel Y. Chen
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Description: InAnimacies, Mel Y. Chen draws on recent debates about sexuality, race, and affect to examine how matter that is considered insensate, immobile, or deathly, animates cultural lives. Toward that end, Chen investigates the blurry division between the  More...

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Book details

Copyright year: 2012
Publisher: Duke University Press
Publication date: 7/10/2012
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 312
Size: 6.00" wide x 9.25" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 1.254
Language: English

InAnimacies, Mel Y. Chen draws on recent debates about sexuality, race, and affect to examine how matter that is considered insensate, immobile, or deathly, animates cultural lives. Toward that end, Chen investigates the blurry division between the living and the dead, or that which is beyond the human or animal. Within the field of linguistics, animacy has been described variously as a quality of agency, awareness, mobility, sentience, or liveness. Chen turns to cognitive linguistics to stress how language habitually differentiates the animate and the inanimate. Expanding this construct, Chen argues that animacy undergirds much that is pressing and indeed volatile in contemporary culture, from animal rights debates to biosecurity concerns.Chen's book is the first to bring the concept of animacy together with queer of color scholarship, critical animal studies, and disability theory. Through analyses of dehumanizing insults, the meanings of queerness, animal protagonists in recent Asian/American art and film, the lead toy panic in 2007, and the social lives of environmental illness,Animaciesilluminates a hierarchical politics infused by race, sexuality, and ability. In this groundbreaking book, Chen rethinks the criteria governing agency and receptivity, health and toxicity, productivity and stillness—and demonstrates how attention to the affective charge of matter challenges commonsense orderings of the world.

Acknowledgments
Introduction: Animating Animacy
Words
Language and Mattering Humans
Queer Animation
Animals
Queer Animality
Animals, Sex, and Transsubstantiation
Metals
Lead's Racial Matters
Following Mercurial Affect
Afterword: The Spill and the Sea
Notes
Bibliography
Index

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