Back in May I wrote that I was working on the final manuscript for an edited collection called Embodying Contagion, co-edited with Sandra Becker and Sara Polak. Now, I am excited to announce that the collection is available for preorder with University of Wales Press, and will be coming to a bookstore or library near you in April 2021. The book will be released in paperback (retailing at £45), but most importantly it will also be coming out in Open Access, thanks to a generous grant from the Dutch NWO Domain Social Sciences and Humanities.
The road to publication has been long and strange. Regrettably, many of the issues discussed in Embodying Contagion have also become unexpectedly relevant. As Priscilla Wald writes in the book’s preface:
WHEN THE EDITORS and contributors submitted the initial manuscript of Embodying Contagion, none of us anticipated we would be making our final revisions during a global pandemic. The experience vividly illustrates many of the issues addressed in the volume, notably how such an event has starkly confronted us with the inequities and injustices that urgently require our attention. We can no longer call for change. At all levels, we have to make it. All of us.
Embodying Contagion includes work by scholars in cultural, literary, and media studies, as well as the medical humanities and social sciences. An overview of the book’s contents is available below, as well as on the UWP website:
Embodying Contagion Table of Contents
“Preface” by Priscilla Wald
“Embodying the Fantasies and Realities of Contagion” by Megen de Bruin-Molé and Sara Polak
Part One: Epidemic Fantasies in Reality
- “The Krokodil Drug Menace, Cross-Genre Body Horror and the Zombie Apocalypse” by Peter Burger
- “‘Preparedness 101: Zombie Pandemic’ and the Ebola Scare: How the CDC’s Use of Zombie Pop Culture Helped Fan a Nationalist Outbreak Narrative” by Sara Polak
- “The Zika Virus, Ebola Contagion Narratives and US Obsessions with Securitising Neglected Infectious Diseases” by Madison Aleece Krall, Marouf Hasian and Yvonne Karyn Clark
- “An Affectionate Epidemic: How Disability Goes Viral on Social Media” by Angela M. Smith
- “‘Fatties Cause Global Warming’: The Strange Entanglement of Obesity and Climate Change” by Francis Ray White
Part Two: Epidemic Realities in Fantasy
- “‘Time is of the Essence, Doctor’: Twenty-First Century (Post-)Apocalyptic Fiction, White Fatherhood and Anti-Intellectual Tendencies in FX’s The Strain” by Sandra Becker
- “Killable Hordes, Chronic Others and ‘Mindful’ Consumers: Rehabilitating the Zombie in Twenty-First-Century Popular Culture” by Megen de Bruin-Molé
- “Networks, Desire and Risk Management in Gay Contagion Fiction” by Mica Hilson
- “‘This Long Disease, My Life’: AIDS Activism and Contagious Bodies in Larry Kramer’s The Normal Heart and The Destiny of Me” by Astrid Haas
- “The Epidemic of History: Contagion of the Past in the Era of the Never-Ending Present” by Elana Gomel
“‘Contagion Contagion’: Viral Metaphors, Lockdown and Suffering Economies in the COVID-19 Pandemic” by Sandra Becker
Read more about Embodying Contagion (and preorder it for your libraries) on the UWP website.