Journal of Literary & Cultural Disability Studies

The Inarticulate Post-Socialist Crip

On the Cruel Optimism of Neoliberal Transformations in the Czech Republic

Journal of Literary & Cultural Disability Studies (2014), 8, (3), 257–274.

Abstract

The article proposes a cripistemological reading of post-socialist rehabilitation in Czechoslovakia in the early 1990s. It discusses the ways in which disability semantics and ideological structures of compulsory health and able-bodiedness served to fuel the optimism of the first post-revolutionary years, and reveals the ways in which the possibility of crip epistemologies and politicized crip horizons were foreclosed. The example of Czechoslovakia in the early 1990s facilitates a more capacious inquiry into the toxicity of attachments to optimism—an affective politics of positivity more generally, and for disability theory specifically. The article also argues for more intense engagement with disability in theories of neoliberalism and formulates a crip critique of the affective politics of neoliberalism for which Lauren Berlant coined the term "cruel optimism."

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Ahmed, Sara. The Promise of Happiness. Durham: Duke UP, 2010. Print. The Promise of Happiness Google Scholar

Berlant, Lauren Gail. Cruel Optimism. Durham: Duke UP, 2011. Print. Cruel Optimism Google Scholar

Duggan, Lisa. The Twilight of Equality?: Neoliberalism, Cultural Politics, and the Attack on Democracy. Boston: Beacon P, 2003. Print. The Twilight of Equality?: Neoliberalism, Cultural Politics, and the Attack on Democracy Google Scholar

"El Rozhovor" s prezidentem Československého Červeného kříže, MUDr. RNDr., PhMr. Václavem Burianem, CSc., s prvni viceprezidentkou ČSČK MUDr. Olgou Královou, s ředitelkou Českého výboru Červeného kříže pověřenou řízením úřadu FV ČSČK PhDr. Václavou Marešovou. Elán: Časopis svazu invalidů 41.7-8 (1990): 1-2. Print. Google Scholar

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Gould, Deborah B. Moving Politics: Emotion and ACT UP's Fight against AIDS. Chicago: U of Chicago P, 2009. Print. Moving Politics: Emotion and ACT UP's Fight against AIDS Google Scholar

Graeber, David. Debt: The First 5,000 Years. Brooklyn: Melville House, 2011. Print. Debt: The First 5,000 Years Google Scholar

Halberstam, Judith. The Queer Art of Failure. Durham: Duke UP, 2011. Print. The Queer Art of Failure Google Scholar

Hann, Chris, ed. Postsocialism. Ideals, Ideologies and Practices in Euroasia. London: Routledge, 2002. Print. Postsocialism. Ideals, Ideologies and Practices in Euroasia Google Scholar

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Juřenová, Ivanka. "Problémy mají i jinde." Vozičkař. 4.2 (1991): 82. Print. Problémy mají i jinde Vozičkař 4 82 Google Scholar

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Klaus, Václav. "Síla Ideji." Literární noviny. 25 April 1991. 1. Print. Síla Ideji Literární noviny 1 Google Scholar

Kolářová, Kateřina. "Affective Politics of Disability Shame in the Times of Neoliberal Exceptionalism." Export-Import-Transport: Queer Theory, Queer Critique and Activism in Motion. Ed. Sushila Mesquita, Maria Katharina Wiedlack, and Katrin Lasthofer. Wien: Zaglossus, 2012. 263-80. Print. Export-Import-Transport: Queer Theory, Queer Critique and Activism in Motion 263 80 Google Scholar

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McRuer, Robert. Crip Theory: Cultural Signs of Queerness and Disability. New York: NYUP, 2006. Print. Crip Theory: Cultural Signs of Queerness and Disability Google Scholar

McRuer, Robert, and Abby Wilkerson. "Desiring Disability: Queer Theory Meets Disability Studies." GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies 9.1-2 (2003): 1-23. Print. Desiring Disability: Queer Theory Meets Disability Studies GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies 9 1 23 Google Scholar

Muñoz, José Esteban. Disidentifications: Queers of Color and the Performance of Politics. Minneapolis: U of Minnesota P, 1999. Print. Disidentifications: Queers of Color and the Performance of Politics Google Scholar

Muñoz, José Esteban. Cruising Utopia: The Then and There of Queer Futurity. New York: NYUP, 2009. Print. Cruising Utopia: The Then and There of Queer Futurity Google Scholar

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Oxford English Dictionary. Oxford: Oxford UP, 1989. Print. Google Scholar

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Pithart, Petr. "Zpráva o stavu České republiky přednesena v ČNR Petrem Pithartem." Lidové Noviny. 10 March 1990. 9-10. Print. Zpráva o stavu České republiky přednesena v ČNR Petrem Pithartem Lidové Noviny 9 10 Google Scholar

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Stiker, Henri-Jacques. A History of Disability. Ann Arbor: U of Michigan P, 1999. Print. A History of Disability Google Scholar

Vachalová, Anna. "Jak dál svaze invalidů?" Elan Express 41.3 (1990): n.p. Print. Jak dál svaze invalidů? Elan Express 41 Google Scholar

"Vážený pane ministerský předsedo." Elán: Časopis svazu invalidů 41.9 (1990): 2. Print. Google Scholar

Verdery, Katherine. What Was Socialism and What Comes Next? Princeton: Princeton UP, 1996. Print. What Was Socialism and What Comes Next? Google Scholar

Wade, Cheryl Marie. "I'm Not One of The." Sinister Wisdom 35 (1988): 24. Print. I'm Not One of The Sinister Wisdom 35 24 Google Scholar

Weiner, Elaine. Market Dreams: Gender, Class, and Capitalism in the Czech Republic. Ann Arbor: U of Michigan P, 2007. Print. Market Dreams: Gender, Class, and Capitalism in the Czech Republic Google Scholar

Williams, Raymond. Marxism and Literature. Oxford: Oxford UP, 1977. Print. Marxism and Literature Google Scholar

Zaviršek, Darja. "Social Work with Adults with Disabilities: An International Perspective." British Journal of Social Work 39.7 (2009): 1393-405. Web. Social Work with Adults with Disabilities: An International Perspective British Journal of Social Work 39 1393 405 Google Scholar

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Kolářová, Kateřina