Victoria Pitts-Taylor: “Deep pasts and failed futures”
November 17, 2020

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Victoria Pitts-Taylor: A work-in-progress reading
Tuesday, November 17 at 6:00pm EST


Deep pasts and failed futures: Exploring hospital time in queer memoir and film (a work-in-progress)


Pitt-Taylor's talk examined the description of 'hospital time' in Amy Hoffman's memoir by that name, as well as in Charlotte Prodger's film BRIDGIT (2016), screened in the gallery and online November 10–22, 2020, through the lens of queer and crip theory. In a close reading of Hoffman's introduction, in which the ICU clock and the calendar produce alienation, Pitts-Taylor showed that hospital time operates within the logic of futurity, casting its AIDS patients as failed subjects who are 'out of time'. Prodger's film situates the hospital in a different timescape, one that looks not to the future but to queerer rhythms of the deep past. Reading them together, Pitts-Taylor posited that the present appears more habitable when it is contextualized in relation to the imagined and recovered past than when it is pitted against an unreachable forthcoming. This reading was of a work-in-progress linked to Pitt-Taylor's broader project including close readings of other texts and films through the lens of temporality and embodiment.


Victoria Pitts-Taylor, Professor of Sociology and Science in Society, and Chair of the Feminist, Gender, and Sexualities Program at Wesleyan University.