Disability Art on Lockdown; Or, Crip World-Making with Dr. Robert McRuer

October 20, 2022
2:30 PM - 3:30 PM CT

Registration is required to attend this event.

"Disability Art on Lockdown; or, Crip World-Making" attends to disabled ways of knowing that have been particularly useful for navigating the global economic, political, and health crisis we are facing. Building on the work I put forward in Crip Times: Disability, Globalization, and Resistance, the title of this presentation has a double valence, gesturing first towards the ways in which disability and art have been, increasingly on lockdown (facing massive cuts from austere governments everywhere), even before 2020. Second, however, the title points to some of the ways that crip art, communication, and resistance were generated during the lockdown of 2020 and beyond. The presentation overviews several contemporary crip modalities for generating crip culture. First, it considers how artists and activists put forward a crip/queer sense of process over product. Second, disability art on lockdown is shaped in crip collectivity that is grounded in disability justice. Third, it performs or actualizes what have come to be called, following Merri Lisa Johnson's coinage of the term, cripistemologies, disabled ways of knowing. Fourth, disability art on lockdown necessitates and thickens what Emma Sheppard has termed "crip pacing" And finally, disability art on lockdown forges what various scholars, activists, and artists, such as Eliza Chandler, have imagined as accessible crip world-making, which has gone by many names, including what Aimi Hamraie terms "alter-livability."

Robert McRuer's work focuses on queer and crip cultural studies and critical theory. His most recent book, Crip Times: Disability, Globalization, and Resistance, was released in January 2018. Crip Times considers locations of disability within contemporary political economies and the roles that disabled movements and representations play in countering hegemonic forms of globalization. His first book, The Queer Renaissance: Contemporary American Literature and the Reinvention of Lesbian and Gay Identities, centered on contemporary lgbt writers, particularly lgbt writers of color, and his second book, Crip Theory: Cultural Signs of Queerness and Disability, attended to cultural sites where critical queerness and disability contest heteronormativity and compulsory able-bodiedness.