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Title: Narrating disability, trauma and pain : the doing and undoing of the self in language
Authors: Borg, Kurt
Keywords: Crosby, Christina, 1953- -- Criticism and interpretation
Butler, Judith, 1956- -- Criticism and interpretation
English literature
Chronic pain
Biography as a literary form
Issue Date: 2018
Publisher: Universitatea Petrol-Gaze din Ploiești
Citation: Borg, K. (2018). Narrating disability, trauma and pain : the doing and undoing of the self in language. Word and Text - A Journal of Literary Studies and Linguistics, 8, 169-186.
Abstract: This article analyses themes from Christina Crosby’s disability memoir A Body, Undone: Living On after Great Pain through the philosophical works of Judith Butler. Both Crosby and Butler propose complementary ideas on corporeal vulnerability, the precariousness of life, relationality and interdependence. Crosby’s memoir provides a critique of dominant disability discourses that affect the social formation and reception of disability narratives, such as narratives that unilaterally characterize disabled subjects as strong, resilient and autonomous while bracketing the traumatic dimension of disability out of the narrative. Crosby’s book is discussed as a rich disability memoir that, while it firmly presents an account of living on, accounts for debilitating physical pain, the traumatic aspect of disability and the intense grief for lost bodily functions, abilities and life possibilities. Reflecting also on the socio-political character of disability narratives, the article considers how and why certain narratives can function critically and motivate a critical analysis of contemporary representations of disabled people. Approaching philosophically Crosby’s memoir through Butler’s work enables a wide-ranging consideration of topics found in the memoir such as the therapeutic nature of writing, narrative identity and its difficulties, the relations between disability studies and trauma theory, the political import of the personal and the ethico-political significance of interdependence.
ISSN: 22479163
Appears in Collections:Scholarly Works - FacEduES

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