Accessible Citizenships. Disability, Nation, and the - download pdf or read online
By Julie Avril Minich
A quantity within the American Literatures Initiative
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Extra info for Accessible Citizenships. Disability, Nation, and the Cultural Politics of Greater Mexico
Nonetheless, I do suggest that even in cases where the texts I examine contain problematic or marginalizing representations of disability, these texts still offer important insights about the value of disability within our ableist, racist, sexist, and homophobic social world. In this sense, Accessible Citizenships aligns with Nicole Marcotić and Robert McRuer’s insistence on the need to exceed “the project of simply classifying particular cultural representations of disability as ‘positive’ or ‘negative’—or relatedly, of assessing them in terms of whether they advance or impede a unitary disability movement” (“Leading With Your Head” 168).
Throughout the novel, the force of Miguel Chico’s anger is directed most powerfully at his grandmother, his father, and their worldview—a worldview characterized by rejection of the body in general and, in particular, of the body that is brown-skinned, disabled, female, or queer. José David Saldívar cites a letter written by Islas to his agent that describes Miguel Chico as “a historical creature who happened to live at a time when he was taught to hate what he perceived himself to be” (“Hybridity of Culture” 164).
6 Upon awakening, he decides “to make peace with his dead” and “to tell the family secrets” (160). The novel thus opens with Miguel Chico wishing for death on a hospital bed, remembering his grandmother’s horror of the body, and ends with him alive, determined to tell his own contestatory narrative, while the most repressive family member passes on. The fact that The Rain God concludes with Miguel Chico’s decision to write a new family narrative indicates Islas’s belief in the power of narrative to redefine community—a belief he shares with the Chicano nationalist writers he critiques, even as he imagines a very different community from theirs.
Accessible Citizenships. Disability, Nation, and the Cultural Politics of Greater Mexico by Julie Avril Minich