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August 15, 2021

Call for Submissions: Crip Pandemic Life

The COVID-19 pandemic has amplified the forms of ableism, racism, sexism, classism, xenophobia, and transphobia that measure lives and deaths differentially. As a result, many disabled and disabled-adjacent people find ourselves negotiating intensified levels of grief, precarity, risk, fear, isolation, and anger.

Long-tacit necropolitical practices (marking some lives for death) have become explicit and institutionalized in medical rationing/refusals of care, reopening plans, vaccine distributions, and rhetoric positioning deaths of entire generations of communities and communities of color as acceptable “prices to pay.” Crip futures now appear marked by supposedly past eugenic practices and state-sanctioned abandonment.

In the face of this dizzying and devastating reality, many of us (re)turn to community knowledge and shared survival skills to live through this crisis, which is compounded by ongoing crises already woven into our lives. Crip knowledge plays a crucial role in sustaining lives, care, and relationality amid state-sponsored neglect. Yet, the conditions of created and perpetuated crises, as we note in the preceding “Cripistemologies of Crisis” special section (Issue 10.1), often make such knowledge as precarious as it is precious. In an effort to capture and “archive” these insights, we take up a thread from disability justice writer, educator, and organizer Mia Mingus to solicit contributions in order to assemble an archive of evidence and experience emergent from crip lives and life in the pandemic.

As Mingus writes: “We must leave evidence. Evidence that we were here, that we existed, that we survived and loved and ached.” A need to gather, hold space for, and preserve evidence—of our angers, our fears, our griefs, our joys, our pleasures, our communities, and our lives—has, for many of us, never felt more urgent. In this spirit, we seek to extend the conversation opened up in “Cripistemologies of Crisis” by inviting contributions—mementos, dreams, reflections, poetry or essays—that might weave together into a larger tapestry commemorating and expressing life, knowledge, experience, and care evocative of the AIDS quilt or the type of work that writer, scholar, and teacher of things unwell Mimi Khúc assembles in “Open In Emergency,” a special issue on Asian American mental health in the Asian American Literary Review.

The essays in “Cripistemologies of Crisis” articulate the importance of building crip crisis knowledge from unstable, fractured, and (hyper)empathetic crip spacetimes and lives as starting points for a critical disability studies methodology in service of justice. As such, we solicit collections of “evidence” of ephemeral and everyday modes of living and surviving. In doing so, we aim to build a tapestry that collectively answers (and exceeds) the following questions: How do we evidence our survival, grief, loss, joy, and pain in the face of escalating and ongoing precarity and loss? How have already precarious yet deeply interdependent modes of living been reshaped or reoriented in the present crisis? In what ways has this fostered or frustrated the inventiveness and resource sharing that are crucial to our survival? Alternatively, how have the conditions of our lives (re)framed what counts as theorizing and the “stuff” of knowledge production within “crisis”? How does this relate to, challenge, and crip our very understandings of evidence? Perhaps put more plainly: what do we need to not forget?

Submission proposals are due by August 15, 2021.

Accessibility

For inquiries about the CFP, please email co-editors Theodora Danylevich and Alyson Patsavas at crippandemiclifecfp@gmail.com with the subject “Crip Pandemic Life Inquiry.”