Much like the social construction of my own body, ravaged environments were “wounded space[s],” colonized and cast aside by ableist, capitalist culture.5 I found comfort in environments whose burdens were as heavy as my own and utilized these environments as partners for mourning as well as spaces of alternative strategy for practicing nonnormativity.6 Bringing disability into conversation with ravaged environments has been an essential part of how I’ve navigated and survived normative culture. These environments accepted me without complication: they taught me, before disability studies could, that physical disability is a condition of relational misfitting.7 Like me, these environments had been cast as misfits—unrestorable bodies—and under my gaze, they became a new baseline of correspondence, one that replaced ableist culture and its means of comparison.
Sara J. Grossman, writing in Living Lexicon
Thoughts: nonnormativity, ferality, disability, anti-psychiatry, neuro-divergence.
Way-finding (verb) cultural and personal practice; 1. To plot a course between two points of departure and destination…
I’m in the middle of leaving a house of nine years and perhaps a country that has been a home for twenty – and so I shouldn’t be surprised to find myself stressed-out, disjointed, twitchy-limbed and generally disassociative. Manically ordering things into Keep, Kill, and Give Away boxes, before a memory in a bare kitchen forces you to resort said boxes. Moving is, I have realized, doing the Shell Game thing with your entire life.
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Another earlier-written piece, again back in 2014, I think. Communitas was an idea talked about by anthropologists Turner and Gennep, which refers to a natural sense of togetherness and sociality that acts as psychic glue for healthy communities.
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Like sunlight breaking out from behind the clouds, this feeling falls on you. Community; family—a sudden and wild recognition of something shared that was not asked for, but happened anyway. I imagined that there was something of what those old Church Revivalists might have felt when they were swept up in rapturous dancing, laughing, or singing in tongues as the Spirit moved through them.
But unlike what I imagine those ceremonies to be, this dancing in the center of the mine, and on the motorways, and the singing before police lines didn’t feel like a blessing being bestowed from on high. It was like a gift rising up, from the stamping of our feet, from the earth beneath us, awakened by our willingness to put our bodies where they felt needed. It feels instead as if people are batteries [or solar chargers perhaps] and if you get enough of them in the right place, at the right time, all intent on the same cause, then…
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