Monday, November 30, 2015

Coming Soon: Cultural Territories of Disability with Simi Linton

Thursday, Dec 3rd, 3:45-5:00 PM
310 Media & Public Affairs Building

MATCH and GWU's Crip/Queer Studies is extremely excited for Simi Linton's upcoming talk this week to finish off a great semester of disability studies presentations. Please come join us on Thursday if you're in the DC area for a night of insight, stimulating conversation, and -- of course -- dance: Note this is a collaborative effort between the English department and Sharon L. Snyder's Gender & Disability class in the Women's Studies Program at the George Washington University

Simi Linton is an author, filmmaker, and arts consultant. Her writings include Claiming Disability: Knowledge and Identity, My Body Politic, andthe essay “Cultural Territories of Disability” in Disability. Dance. Artistry., forthcoming from Dance/NYC. She is the subject of the documentary filmInvitation to Dance, which she and Christian von Tippelskirch directed and produced. Linton’s consultancy practice, Disability/Arts, works to shape the presentation of disability in the arts. Linton was on faculty at CUNY for 14 years, was a Switzer Distinguished Fellow (1995-1996), Co-Director of the University Seminar in Disability Studies at Columbia University (2003-2007), Presidential Visiting Scholar at Hofstra University (2006) and a recipient of the 2015 Barnard Medal of Distinction. Linton was recently appointed by Mayor Bill de Blasio to New York City’s Cultural Affairs Advisory Commission.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

American Sign Language Workshop

“Thou shalt not curse the deaf, 
nor put a stumbling block before the blind"
Leviticus 19:14

On Wednesday, November 18th, 2:30 to 4:30 PM the MATCH Crip/Queer Working Group held a workshop on American Sign Language (ASL) as part of its initiative to increase familiarity with non-verbal forms of communication. The event was led by Samuel Yates and M.W. Bychowski.

The event began with a brief history of how ASL evolved from the French Sign Language system (which used two hands instead of the one handed English model) before it was brought to the United States as part of a new education initiative. The advantages of ASL included the ability to allow members of the Deaf community to communicate with one another while previous models focused on lip-reading, a process which privileges the hearing as the active user of language and the Deaf as the passive recipient. We discussed Deaf and signing culture, the development of local signs and the creation of artistic practices such as Yale's ASL Shakespeare Project.

Next we learned how to sign letters and some basic words. Each of us learned how to spell our names and introduce ourselves: hello, my name is ______.  We learned about the role of facial expressions to punctuate and modify signs. Among the signing etiquette we discussed was the how simulcomming can put the emphasis on the language of the hearing, modifying ASL fit into spoken English and breaking the grammatical rules of signing. In the end, we looked through various options for learning more about ASL through college courses, summer intensive language programs, online tools, text-books, and even smart-phone apps. However each of us moved on from the workshop, however, we all gained a better appreciation of the valuable culture of ASL.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Coming Soon: American Sign Language Workshop

Wednesday at 2:30pm - 4:30pm
The English Department Lounge

American Sign Language (ASL) is a beautiful and helpful linguistic culture used by roughly 2,000,000 people. That makes ASL the 4th most used language in the United States! In affirmation of the significant societal role ASL plays and as part of a MATCH Crip/Queer Initiative to improve familiarity with non-spoken languages, the Working Group is offering an afternoon workshop for beginners and those completely new to ASL. Come with questions and learn the history, culture and skills that makes signing an invaluable part of society. All are welcome!

For more information contact M.W. Bychowski (

Monday, November 2, 2015

Crip/Queer Reading Group: Cripistemologies: A Virtual Roundtable

"How, when, where, and why do queer, feminist, and disability epistemologies converge?

"Proliferating Cripistemologies: A Virtual Roundtable" 
by Robert McRuer and Merri Lisa Johnson.



On October 21st, MATCH's Crip/Queer Reading Group met to discuss "Proliferating Cripistemologies: A Virtual Roundtable," composed by Robert McRuer and Merri Lisa Johnson for GLQ, Volume 8, Issue 2, 2014. The curated roundtable included contributions from Lennard Davis, David Serlin, Emma Kivisild, Jennifer Nash, Jack Halberstam, Margaret Price, Rosemarie Garland-Thomson, Jasbir K. Puar, Susan Schweik, Jennifer James, Lisa Duggan, and Carrie Sandahl. The diversity of the participants reflected the intersections and divergences of many different trajectories in the node of crip knowledges, including feminism, queer studies, phenomenology, marxism, anarchism, and critical race theory. Each scholar brought their own questions and concerns to the table, "What tensions or torsions exist among various cripistemologies? Are certain forms of queer (anti)sociality, for instance, in discord with interdependency as it has been imagined and materialized by feminist disability studies? Are there crip positions, embodiments, or moments of pain or pleasure that necessarily exceed the (compulsory?) identities or identifications of rights-based movements?"

In turn, the members of MATCH echoed the multiplicity of movements that meet in the node of cripistemology. Debates arouse around the utility and danger of identity based politics, rights versus justice tactics of activism, the uniqueness of subject positions and "the situated i" that is always already in relation, as well as the role of systems of government and the free market. The members of the reading group posed their own critical insights and questions as well, drawing out themes relating to post-colonialism, performance studies, transgender studies, and medieval theology. In the end, the definition or use of cripistemology was left uncertain but furthered each of our thinking and produced new collective insights.