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Weak PlanetLiterature and Assisted Survival$
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Wai Chee Dimock

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780226477077

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226477077.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CHICAGO SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.chicago.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Chicago Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CHSO for personal use.date: 16 September 2021



Not Paralyzed

(p.171) Afterword
Weak Planet

Wai Chee Dimock

University of Chicago Press

The Afterword comes back to these mediating networks one more time, making an explicit case now for a form of nonlinear agency and collateral resilience. Left-field developments rather than targeted hits, collateral resilience inversely matches collateral damage and, like the latter, speaks to the importance of cascading side effects, multiply authored and peripherally propagated, emerging where one might not expect them to. The redress networks occasioned by the late-life frailties of Sitting Bull are a case in point. The nineteenth-century Lakota warrior, celebrated for his military prowess in his youth, was held prisoner by the United States government on the Standing Rock Reservation in his last decades. The Afterword also looks at the writings of Luther Standing Bear and the present-day climate activism of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and the Lakota language classes at Sitting Bull College as oblique responses to these past defeats, a nonlinear mediation bearing the input of many. Persevering against all odds and granting assisted life to finite beings, these precarious experiments make up a poetics of non-paralysis, keeping alive hopes in a future still unforeclosed, weakly but meaningfully open to our efforts.

Keywords:   mediating networks, nonlinear agency, collateral resilience, Sitting Bull, Luther Standing Bear, Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, Lakota language, Sitting Bull College, climate activism, Dakota Access Pipeline

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