Those that resemble flies from a distance’: Performing Research

Gunaratnam, Yasmin. 2019. Those that resemble flies from a distance’: Performing Research. MAI: Feminism & Visual Culture, Summer(4), [Article]

Gunaratnam Final Feminist new materialities 7 Jan 2019 (3).pdf - Accepted Version
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Abstract or Description

In making more explicit this politics of knowing and researching differently in the context of feminist new materialism’s exploration of bodies and matter, my interest is in what Renold and Mellor (2013: 25) have framed as attentiveness to how ‘subjectivity is extended into a range of different ‘universes’, beyond the individual and towards a collective and connected affective assemblage of other bodies and things’ (reference in quote omitted). While Renold and Mellor are referring to a ‘Deleuzo-Guattarian notion of becoming’ (p.25), concern with the attenuations of subjectivity into larger networks is a vibrant seam in black and diasporic fiction (for examples see Butler 1988/1979; Danticat 2015/1994; Morrison 1987) and in feminist of colour research (Cho 2008; De Alwis 2009; Hartman 1997). To show what trying to decipher and trace this connectedness can entail, I will draw on empirical performances that feature the dance between disease-impaired subjectivity and what has been respectively called ‘black’ (McKittrick and Weheliye 2017) and ‘brown’ (Muñoz 2018) mattering: that is, how socially sculpted forms of race making can impress themselves into matter and how matter can elude and exceed racialisation.

Item Type:



Feminist new materialism, methods, performance, migration, debility

Departments, Centres and Research Units:



29 March 2019Accepted
15 May 2019Published

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

29 May 2019 13:45

Last Modified:

09 Jun 2021 15:36

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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