book review: undrowned11 Aug 2021
What are the main ideas?
- we have a lot to learn from marine mammals because we are more alike than most of us have been led to believe
- colonial, rational worldviews infiltrate the way most of us look at and understand marine mammals (and probably all other life, too, but that’s not necessarily a point the book is making).
- by paying attention to the ways that marine mammals are adapting to changing conditions of their homes (via indirect and direct human destruction), we can gain lessons about how we can (a) stop doing that harm and (b) adapt to the world that is changing beyond our current seeming capacity to.
- cross-species mothering is not an aberration; it’s intentional and evolutionary behavior.
- there is immense and specific wisdom in how marine mammals are with their breath.
If I implemented one idea from this book right now, which one would it be?
the belief that we don’t have anything to learn from our marine mammal kin is constructed and false. pay attention.
How would I describe the book to a friend?
alexis pauline gumbs has done it again. in her established pro-etic (prose + poetic) style, she has completely transformed my way of understanding the world we live in. in ~160 page and 20 short chapters, she covers huge expanses with stunning depth, clarity, and brevity. any black (queer) feminist will devour this book for all of the ways that it expands what is possible in the realm of lqf thinking and practice. this book is already a sacred text, is probably worth an annual reread, and is magnitudes better when read with others (who will each catch different parts of the text and bring it all even more to life).
ps - i think i will continue to call gumbs’ work proetry because that’s just what it feels like to me.
reminder: book review structure
words / writing / post-processing
304w / 10min / 3min