Ahh, the Intellectual Life.

Remember, you are paying the salary of a guy to come up with this stuff. ‘A First Things blog discovered this (cough) fascinating discourse from one of our professors. He is trying to start a new field of studies – “Queer ecology”.

“Ecological critique has argued that speciesism underlies sexism and racism ([Carey] Wolfe [Animal Rites: American Culture, the Discourse of Species, and Posthumanist Theory.  Chicago: U of Chicago P, 1991])—why not homophobia too?  How do we think about life-forms and their diverse sexualities and pleasures?  Any attempt at queer ecology must imagine ways of doing justice to life-forms while respecting the lessons of evolutionary biology—that the boundary between life and non-life is thick and full of paradoxical entities” (276).

“Queer ecology will worry away at the human-nonhuman boundary, too.  How can we ever distinguish properly between humans and nonhumans?  Doesn’t the fact that identity is in the eye of the beholder put serious constraints on such distinctions?  It’s not just that rabbits are rabbits in name only; it’s that whether or not we have words for them, rabbits are deconstrictive all the way down—signifying and display happen at every level.  Nothing is self-identical.  We are embodied yet without essence.  Organicism is holistic and substantialist, visualizing carbon-based life-forms (organic in another sense) as the essence of livingness.  Queer ecology must go wider, embracing silicon as well as carbon, for instance. . . .  Queer ecology would go to the end and show how beings exist precisely because they are nothing but relationality, deep down—for the love of matter” (277).

Well, allow me to retort:

He forgets that the essence of non-existential existentialism is composed of the human-nonhuman boundary as well as evolutionary constructs and destructs as well. The critique of the hermeneutical paradigm is foreshadowed by the ecology of carbon-based identity. That is to say, rabbits are rabbits only because the deconstructed “rabbit” is not immediately apparent to organic livingness. Queer ecology must by its very nature go to the end and show how professors exist precisely because they utter nothing but gibberish. Gibberish, nonsense, obfuscating verbosity, all deep down –  for the love of bullshit.


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