An abstract of an academic paper written by a doctoral student: "In this semimanifesto, I approach how understandings of quantum physics and cyborgian bodies can (or always already do) ally with feminist anti-oppression practices long in use. The idea of the body (whether biological, social, or of work) is not stagnant, and new materialist feminisms help to recognize how multiple phenomena work together to behave in what can become legible at any given moment as a body. By utilizing the materiality of conceptions about connectivity often thought to be merely theoretical, by taking a critical look at the noncentralized and multiple movements of quantum physics, and by dehierarchizing the necessity of linear bodies through time, it becomes possible to reconfigure structures of value, longevity, and subjectivity in ways explicitly aligned with anti-oppression practices and identity politics. Combining intersectionality and quantum physics can provide for differing perspectives on organizing practices long used by marginalized people, for enabling apparatuses that allow for new possibilities of safer spaces, and for practices of accountability."--an abstract of a paper by doctoral student Whitney Stark
Atomic particles, how can it be so
that your purpose is not just to flow
in and out of existence, building reality--
the stars, cosmic gas and galaxies--
but to “ally” with groups of humans fighting “hierarchies”
and demanding “safe spaces”
(even though their entire race is
at the top of their planet’s food chain).
In this mysterious universe there is no safety,
accountability or identity,
only elements, and energy.
Brief combinations make life
legible for a nanosecond in cosmic time, and doomed to strife.
Biology does not know oppression,
only generation, reproduction,
until our growth chokes us and we fall
like so many of our ancestors, who lived and died
on this blue-green ball.
And one day the sun will explode and blow
even our atoms, which have endured (despite oppression),
and the particles will go far until maybe they sow
new life, in bodies unfamiliar, on planets unknown.
In fairness to Whitney Stark, right-wing groups mislabeled her paper as an attack on Isaac Newton. She was ridiculed as anti-science and a dogmatic feminist. In fact Stark is referencing quantum physics, which may contradict Newtonian physics to some extent. I really wanted to read what she wrote as a playful attempt to draw a parallel between quantum physics and non-hierarchical organizing, but her jarring repetition of politically correct catchphrases and slogans shows this is only an attempt to submit to the current academic authoritarianism that has taken over women's studies and many other fields--perhaps even universities as a whole--so that professors merely recite a dogma of oppression rather than questioning and exploring.