We are pleased to announce an online lecture by
Alyson Patsavas
(The University of Illinois at Chicago)

Archiving Pain: On Crip Queer Evidence

This lecture is going to be a part of the
American Studies Colloquium Series,
which are running online until regular
operations are resumed!

Thursday, May 7, 2020
at 4:00 p.m

It is still possible to get OZN points for participating
in this event! Check how to do this here.

Where?

Online on our Facebook group!

What?

This talk weaves personal experience, archival research, and a photo-essay together to ask how we might crip and queer evidence of pain. Philosophers, doctors, and pain studies scholars alike lament the absence of objective measurement tools to verify and prove pain’s existence. Arguments of pain’s purported resistance to language (Scarry) and uniquely subjective nature abound to frame personal accounts of pain as flawed, provisional, and suspect. Biomedicine has, in turn, offered an assortment of supplementary diagnostic tools meant to evidence pain—from pain scales to pain tracking apps. Despite the fantasy of certainty that such “biocertifications” (Samuels) offer, experiences of pain remain widely dismissed among women, older adults, and racial and ethnic minorities because of the absence of objective measurement tools. In this talk, I juxtapose material from a history of pain medicine collection with personal accounts of pain to track and interrogate the gaps between two differing archives of pain. In doing so, I outline dominant pain epistemologies and, drawing from critical theory’s interrogations and re-imaginings of archives, theorize what constitutes crip and queer evidence of pain.

Who?

Alyson Patsavas is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Disability and Human Development at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). She is also the Associate Director of Undergraduate Studies. Her scholarship is situated at intersections of disability studies, feminist theory and queer theory, and focuses on the cultural politics of pain, health and illness as well as representations of disability in film, television, and popular culture.

Her work appears in Different Bodies: Essays on Disability in Film and Television, The Feminist Wire, Somatechnics, Disability Studies Quarterly, The Czech Sociological Review, and the Journal of Literary and Cultural Disability Studies. Patsavas is also a writer and producer on the documentary film Code of the Freaks (2020) that examines crip culture’s response to Hollywood representations of disability. She is currently working on a manuscript that interrogates the discursive construction of pain and pain relief as a distinct cultural, economic, and political “problem” to theorize crip, queer interventions into how we come to know and understand pain.

Year 2021/2022

May 30: The (Early) Literature of COVID-19. Session V

May 24, 2022

This open seminar will explore initial literary responses to the ongoing SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, offering participants opportunities to talk through this world-changing event. By the end of the seminar, participants should be able to not only identify but also to interpret and evaluate common features of early COVID literature within and beyond the United States.

American Studies Colloquium Series

June 2: Eat, Migrate, Love: Gastronomic and Sexual Desire as Identity

May 24, 2022

This talk, whose title plays off the Julia Robert’s film “Eat, Pray, Love,” will explore queer films and queer immigrants’ relationships to food as part of the cultural identity, and how the rituals around food preparation and consumption informs their negotiations in the US.

Year 2021/2022

June 8: Sounds of Dune(s): Music-landscaping in Cinema

May 24, 2022

In this workshop we’ll talk about Frank Herbert’s “Dune” and its many adaptations (both real and unrealized), in order to see how music and sound are used to bridge sensory gaps in cinematic experiences, and how to write about such synaesthetic encounters in our research.

Year 2021/2022

May 23: Gender/Sexuality Conference ASC

May 23, 2022

ASC’s Gender/Sexuality Research Group invites all students and faculty members to the first ASC’s Student Conference on gender and sexuality in American studies. We have an exciting day planned, with a keynote by Dr. Richard Reitsma and four panels of student presentations, on everything from feminist theories to representation of trans characters on TV and challenging the norms of masculinity.

American Studies Colloquium Series

May 19: ‘bits of agitation on the body of the whole’: Animals in COVID-19 Literature

May 19, 2022

Given its origins in horseshoe bat populations, the SARS-CoV-2 virus offers many opportunities to re-think our relationships with the nonhuman world around us. In this talk, Raymond Malewitz will explore emerging cultural narratives embodied in COVID poetry and fiction, which tend to reinforce the stiff differences between the human and the nonhuman as physically and conceptually separate from one another.