Liz Bowen is a disabled poet and scholar. She is currently the Rice Family Postdoctoral Fellow in Bioethics and the Humanities at The Hastings Center, after earning a Ph.D. in English and comparative literature from Columbia University in 2020. She is the author of the poetry collections Sugarblood (Metatron Press, 2017) and Compassion Fountain (Trembling Pillow Press 2021), and her criticism is published or forthcoming in English Literary History, Post45, The New Inquiry, Boston Review, and American Poetry Review.
Authors | Liz Bowen
Articles on Amodern by Liz Bowen
The Poetics of Meat, Mad Cows, and Human-Animal Illness
It may seem nonsensical to suggest that there could be such a thing as a nonhuman disability poetics, given that language is widely presumed to belong only to human beings. But Ariana Reines’ The Cow gives the lie to this assumption – not by appealing to arguments that nonhuman animals have languages of their own, but by excavating the poetic processes through which the language of industrial farming materially alters both nonhuman and human bodies. Through a formal analysis of “mad cow disease” in The Cow, this essay argues that poetry makes it possible to reckon with, rethink, and repurpose the language we might use to imagine disability beyond the human.