“Imagining worlds beyond fungibility: Science fictional approaches to particularity”

Access copy (please feel welcome to email me if you were there and need a copy of the full paper now)

Interdisziplinäres Zentrum für Geschlechterforschung (IZG) at the Zentrum für interdisziplinäre Forschung (ZiF), Bielefeld

2 July, 2024


How do we imagine new worlds? One way to answer this question is to shape ourselves against what we inherit and what people expect of us; to become more defiantly ourselves and to build a world that supports everyone else also getting ever weirder. In this paper, I discuss anarchist approaches to nourishing beautiful specificity in this mode, such that the purpose of society is to allow each of us to manifest our uniqueness. I put Samuel Delany’s science fictional discussions of gendered embodiment into conversation with Black feminist theorizations of the creation of the category of “fungibility,” the process by which things are made exchangeable in the marketplace. I ask: Should we aim for uniqueness? Or are there other ecologies of flourishing embodiment that we might yearn for?

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