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Download A Body, Undone: Living On After Great Pain by Christina Crosby PDF

By Christina Crosby

Within the early night on October 1, 2003, Christina Crosby used to be 3 miles right into a seventeen mile bicycle journey, purpose on attaining her target of 1,000 miles for the driving season. She was once a revered senior professor of English who had celebrated her 50th birthday a month ahead of. As she crested a hill, she stuck a department within the spokes of her bicycle, which immediately pitched her to the pavement. Her chin took the entire strength of the blow, and her head snapped again. In that rapid, she used to be paralyzed.

In A physique, Undone, Crosby places into phrases a damaged physique that turns out past the succeed in of language and knowing. She writes a few physique shot via with neurological ache, disoriented in time and area, incapacitated through paralysis and deadened sensation. to deal with this international physique, she calls upon the readerly pleasures of narrative, severe feminist and queer pondering, and the targeted language of lyric poetry. operating with those assets, she recollects her Nineteen Fifties tomboy methods in small-town, rural Pennsylvania, and files growing to be into the Nineteen Seventies via radical feminism and the affirmations of homosexual liberation.

Deeply unsentimental, Crosby communicates in unflinching prose the event of "diving into the break" of her physique to recognize grief, and loss, but in addition to acknowledge the wonder, fragility, and dependencies of all human our bodies. A memoir that may be a meditation on incapacity, metaphor, gender, intercourse, and love, A physique, Undone is a compelling account of dwelling on, as Crosby rebuilds her physique and models a existence via writing, reminiscence, and hope.

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Extra resources for A Body, Undone: Living On After Great Pain

Sample text

With Michelle Obama’s bright encouragement, you know you have only yourself to blame for making poor “choices” that undermine your family’s health, starting with decisions about food. Such decisions, however, can be imagined to be those of an autonomous and freely willing subject only if you abstract the embodied realities of grinding poverty into weightless ideas—it’s called “grinding” precisely because it wears you down and wears you out. I smoked cigarettes in college, but gave it up years ago.

Sometimes the burning is accompanied by spasticity, as my left leg—or my right one—begins to stiffen and shake for a few seconds, and then relax, but relax for less than a minute, only to go into another spasm. The spasticity itself comes in waves: cramping, quivering, jumping, jerking my leg so that there is no sleep for me—or for Janet—without further pharmacological intervention. So I take a 30 | Falling into Hell Valium, and lie there in bed, thinking about embodied life until I’m knocked out.

Although I was being given NuLytely, a mightily powerful drug used to empty bowels—you may have used it when cleaning yourself out before a colonoscopy—I could not relieve myself. You’re quickly in big trouble if you’re not moving waste from your body. As I learned, “bowels lead,” a simple truth with profound ramifications. Constipation, uncomfortable for anyone, is a real threat when emerging from surgery, because the body recovers from general anesthesia slowly. I had been under twice, and each time for a long time.

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