The Biopolitics of Plasticity

An issue of: Social Text

The Biopolitics of Plasticity
Journal Issue Pages: 124 Volume 38, Number 2 Number: 143 Published: June 2020 An issue of Social Text
Special Issue Editor(s): Kyla Schuller, Julian Gill-Peterson
Contributors to this special issue argue that plasticity—the capacity of living systems to generate and take on new forms—is a central feature of biopolitics. Moving away from the position of many scientific and scholarly domains to celebrate plasticity’s disorganizing and disruptive features in relation to normalizing and dominating systems of power, the authors investigate how race and state power actually depend on plasticity and enlist its malleability and formlessness to govern living populations and individuals. In these four essays, they propose a critical reckoning with the racial politics of this important concept to ask new questions about how to understand the organic malleability of the body and categories like race, sex, gender, and sexuality.

Contributors: Neel Ahuja, Kadji Amin, Jules Gill-Peterson, Max Hantel, Kyla Schuller, Sonali Thakkar


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