The Right To Maim: Debility, Capacity, Disability
In this lecture, which is an overview of Jasbir Puar's forthcoming book, she presents a theory of biopolitical debilitation that foregrounds the injuring mechanisms of racialization, capitalism, and imperialism. In challenging liberal disability rights frames, debility illuminates not only what is left out of disability imaginaries and rights politics, but also the constitutive absences necessary for capacitating discourses of disability empowerment, pride, visibility, and inclusion to take shape. Thus, disability and debility are not at odds with each other. Rather they are necessary supplements in an economy of injury that claims and promotes disability empowerment at the same time that it maintains the precarity of certain bodies and populations precisely through making them availability for injury.
Puar is an associate professor of Women's & Gender Studies at Rutgers University who will be in conversation with Stanford anthropologist Lochlann Jain.