Dionne Brand's long poem Inventory (2006) calls for recognition of intersecting sites of embodied vulnerability within the state security regimes that render Arab bodies as collateral damage and the deportation regimes that produce undocumented workers, refugees, and asylum seekers as 'the citizen's other.' Brand's central strategy is the creation of juxtaposed precarity archives of disregarded bodies subject to violent death in Iraqi war zones and in transnational deportation zones. Foregrounding the meditated witness to international atrocities, Brand constructs a tenuous position of ethical accounting through four related strategies: creation of a post-identitarian yet embodied poetic subjectivity; interrogation of distanced witness passivity through the stance of translocal citizenship; mapping cross connections between zones of precarization; and producing affective intimacy based in the material vulnerability of the body as the foci for 'ethically oppositional mourning' (Spargo).

Additional Metadata
Keywords deportation regime, mediated witness, oppositional elegy, precarity, translocal citizenship
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.3138/utq.82.2.242
Journal University of Toronto Quarterly
Citation
Vellino, B. (2013). 'History's pulse measured with another hand': Precarity archives and translocal citizen witness in dionne brand's inventory. University of Toronto Quarterly, 82(2), 242–260. doi:10.3138/utq.82.2.242