“can you tell the rhetorical difference?”: Foraging and Fodder in Rita Wong’s forage


In forage, Rita Wong explores the subversion and lexicon of “familiar” cultural narratives—that is, status quo stories—with its less-familiar affects. Calling upon her skillful use of poetics, Wong challenges material interconnectedness by revealing how neoliberal ideology supports and inextricably links status quo stories to the socio-political and the cultural; that is, identity is not only surrounded but also rendered by constructs of commodification that is determined through language and physical bodies. In this essay, invoking protean assemblages of mattering in relation to identity, I explore how “foraging” and “fodder” are in tension in Wong’s collection, highlighting the search for (intellectual) sustenance, and yet how being caught within a capitalist system and its deployment of “status quo stories” is used in turn as “fodder” for the functioning of neoliberal machinery.

Instead of how they appear in issue 244, notes 2 and 3 of Morgan Cohen’s article “Foraging and Fodder” should read as follows: 2) Karen Barad distinguishes between phenomena, as opposed to phenomenon, in “Posthumanist Performativity.” She claims that phenomena considers the meaning of an object in relation to the affect of its situation; it considers all elements of space including the positioning of the observer, writer, storyteller, and so forth, whereas phenomenon is a fixed observation. 3) In "Posthumanist Performativity," Barad relays Haraway's juxtaposition of diffraction and reflection in Modest_Witness@Second_Millennium. FemaleMan_Meets_OncoMouse: Feminism and Technoscience. Whereas reflection is a direct reproduction of difference, diffraction analyzes the effects of difference through relations of space. We apologize to author Morgan Cohen and our readers for this error and for any confusions it may have caused.

This article ““can you tell the rhetorical difference?”: Foraging and Fodder in Rita Wong’s forage” originally appeared in Sensing Different Worlds Spec. issue of Canadian Literature 244 (2021): 82-102.

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