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Disability and the PosthumanBodies, Technology and Cultural Futures$
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Stuart Murray

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781789621648

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781789621648.001.0001

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Visualising and Re-Membering Disability Body Politics in Filmic Representations of the ‘War on Terror’

Visualising and Re-Membering Disability Body Politics in Filmic Representations of the ‘War on Terror’

Chapter:
(p.131) Chapter Three Visualising and Re-Membering Disability Body Politics in Filmic Representations of the ‘War on Terror’
Source:
Disability and the Posthuman
Author(s):

Stuart Murray

Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.3828/liverpool/9781789621648.003.0005

This chapter focuses specifically on film and visualising depictions of the connections between disability and posthumanism as they are manifest in a set of contemporary narratives about war and conflict. I use a broad conception of prosthetics to read these intersections, claiming that their articulations of embodiment are disability stories even as they appear to be narratives of hyperability, scientific strength and male authority. The chapter juxtaposes a series of Hollywood features exploring the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan with films made in Iraq and Iran that narrate the conflict from alternative points of view, ones that often lack the kinds of sophisticated technology that so marks American storytelling. In each, the power of the visual, of seeing disabled bodies, is paramount. Seeing the weaponized soldier, as well as the disabilities such technologies produce through the disasters they create, creates a powerful identification that reaches across many aspects of contemporary life, from media images of refugees to stories of disabled veterans. The chapter claims that fiction film, again often full of the messy contradictions that define the meeting of disability and posthumanism, offers opportunities to unpick the terms of this power and the reach of its meanings.

Keywords:   Disability, Technology, Prosthetics, Film, War on Terror, Masculinity, Iraq

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