︎



Exit from the  Colony. Farewell to the Empire.


Lesia Prokopenko




«Hold your tongue!» said the Queen turning purple.
«I wo’n’t!» said Alice.
«Off with her head!» the Queen shouted at the top of her voice. Nobody moved.
«Who cares for you?» said Alice (she had grown to her full size by this time.) «You're nothing but a pack of cards!»
At this the whole pack rose up into the air, and came flying down upon her: she gave a little scream, half of fright and half of anger, and tried to beat them off, and found herself lying on the bank, with her head in the lap of her sister, who was gently brushing away some dead leaves that had fluttered down from the trees upon her face.0



I



I have mixed feelings about writing in the first person, and yet locating the narrator is precisely what is indispensable for this text. It would be quite beneficial to do it as rare as possible: saying ‘I’ requires strong ethical reasoning and should come with a full acknowledgment of the fragmentedness of whatever ‘I’ is. But as soon as I was invited to offer a piece of writing around the motifs of colonialism and decolonization, it was clear as day that I would need to describe the whereabouts of ‘I’ and, consequently, I would have to write precisely this. The text that I don’t really need to write, and therefore can. ‘I’ is but a line segment ‘⟷’. I’m going to use it here just to show how it grows shorter and shorter until it becomes a point, a singularity.

(De)colonization certainly has a common root with columns — with Cristóbal Colón1 — as well as colons and colonoscopy.

As a triumphal column, ‘I’ can be the mark of imperial glory, like Pompey’s Pillar in Alexandria. And it can also be the mark of defeating an invader, like the Serpent Column at the Hippodrome of Constantinople, which the Greeks had built to celebrate their victory over the Persian Empire, long before Byzantium, the Greek colony, became Constantinople, the capital of the Roman Empire, and then the Byzantine, the Latin, and the Ottoman Empires, long before Constantinople became Istanbul, the capital of Turkey.

But there are other types of triumphal columns too. The ‘I’ of the baroque Immaculata in Slovakian Košice commemorates the gratitude to Saint Mary for ending the plague epidemic that was raging in 1709–1710. In the shape of Immaculata one may distinguish the Cyrillic ‘Я’: haloed Mary standing on a golden globe on top and a wave rising from the stereobate to hold Saint Joseph, Saint Sebastian or Saint Ladislaus, depending on the side you are looking at. The column itself is covered in the folds of soft clouds, with angels peeking out from them.




And in the center of Kiev, the city where I happened to be born, there’s a highly postmodern column topped with a female figure allegedly representing a Slavic tutelary deity allegedly representing the independence of Ukraine.

I do prefer to spell it ‘Kiev’ rather than ‘Kyiv’. And the first written mention of this city comes from a letter written around 930 CE — in Hebrew — by the members of Khazar Jewish community asking Jews of other cities to donate money for a poor man’s ransom. And so, in this letter, which contains, in Turkic runiform, the one and only known record of the Khazar language, the phrase okhqurüm, «I have read it», — in this document, which is the oldest scripture coming from Kievan Rus’, the name of the city is spelled as קייב— Qiyyōb. In fact, there are researchers, namely, Omeljan Pritsak and George Vernadsky, who did suggest that this toponym was of Khazar rather than Slavic origin. Multiethnic Khazars lived here quite long before and quite long after the city’s conquest in 882 by Oleg, the Varangian, or Viking, konung — who created, no more no less, the state of Kievan Rus’. Oleg (in Old Norse, Helgi) was authorized to do that by Rurik (in Old Norse, Hrøríkʀ). These events were all described in the early XII century document, written in Old East Slavic language — long before Russian and Ukrainian existed as separate phenomena at all. In this document, called The Tale of Bygone Years, the name of the capital is spelled Києвъ — Kiev. It’s hard to insist that this spelling is colonialand wasimposedby the Russian Empire.  

So can we, can we just agree that — coming from the land where the letter written in Hebrew was registered in Khazar in the times when the pagan descendants of Norse rulers were taking care of foreign and domestic policy by marrying Byzantine princesses and implementing forced Christianization of local Slav tribes, the land to be later called Ѹкраина, Oukraina, ‘Borderland’, different parts of it to be associated in different centuries with the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, the Kingdom of Poland, Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, the Kingdom of Galicia and Lodomeria within the Habsburg Monarchy, or, later, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, the Tsardom of Russian and the Russian Empire, the Soviet Union, and, for centuries, the Khanate of the Golden Horde and the Crimean Khanate of the Ottoman Empire — can we agree that in this eclectic dynamic I opt for Russian language not exactly because I’ve been colonized by Russia. No Oedipus, we don’t go there. In this case, I’m the Sphinx and I am the one asking questions. Check it out, the Sphinx is ‘Я’ on the pedestal of ‘I’.




After Oedipus answers her questions, the Sphinx presumedly kills herself, but that is just her last riddle he will never be able to solve: she says, «Look, no more ‘I’-s.»

I’m not speaking for anyone anymore. It’s over and done with. I did go to Maidan during the protests and later took part in organizing several projects dedicated to these events and the ensuing situation. I saw way too many power-hungry little creatures telling other power-adoring little creatures what to take pride in and at whose expense. State bureaucrats, militant macho leftists, mediocre patriotic businessmen, nazi boys — in that, they all become indistinguishable from one another.

I do not represent any nation-state. I do not identify with any borders. I represent everything, nothing, myself, a body, a nobody, a somebody. Okhqurüm.   

The School of Qiyyōb


So, Kiev it is.

In 2015, I got into a mess. I was taking part in the work on a very ambitious, megalomaniac venture. It was co-organized by a couple of Austrian curators and a rather prominent leftist Ukrainian NGO — they invited me to be the head of projects, something like an executive director in corporate terms, with some conceptual and public appearance functions.

The founder of the NGO, to this day a celebrated left-wing intellectual, was my former university professor, V. — I was the only student allowed to address him in the informal second-person singular. After I graduated, we practically lost contact. I tried to pursue a certain art managerial career, which led me eventually to meeting the Austrian curators, and then, surprisingly, to close cooperation, now on supposedly equal terms, with my old friend V.

He was doing drugs, and I, having suffered certain losses and recovering from the previous year’s post-Maidan marathon, didn’t hesitate too long before accepting the invitation to join in. And then I made a lot of other mistakes.

«Don’t worry about anything,» V. would say.

He would tell me all kinds of disagreeable things about our colleagues behind their backs, the young women who were doing all the most tedious tasks, the men who were enacting each his own power scenario — and I did defend them, the people who would keep working with V. on their projects later on. When these power scenarios were crushing me, V. would say, «You have no reason to be upset, I’m your friend». It wasn’t long before he made me find out what gaslighting was, it’s many types and styles.

By the end of the project, the hell was gaping open. V. was ignoring all my questions, inverting all my attempts to communicate. At group meetings, to prove me stupid or wrong, he would go as far as denying the ecological crisis. When I ultimately realized I was starring in Dogville, it was, just like in Dogville, way too late. And, as you know, there is only one way out of Dogville.

N


Certainly, we need to take into account that the cinematic language and temporality have nothing to do with the course of life. In spring 2016, after a major breakdown and a bad psychic crisis — I moved to the provincial town of N., an hour and a half away from Kiev, where Gogol went to school, where Olga Khokhlova, a dancer of Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes, was born, and where my mother’s family comes from. N. has always been an important infrastructural point, with a mixed population. This is where I’m based in as I’m writing this, commuting to Kiev for dinners and walks, and traveling abroad for residencies and talks. The friends who were helping me the most when I needed it were the ones who never belonged to any righteous groups and never proclaimed any ambition to save the world.

My detachment brought me closer to reality — and to myself. I got clean, quit smoking, quit alcohol and caffeine, and (yeah, of course) took up yoga, moving more and more in the direction of severe gwynethpaltrowfication. I preach care and the Audre-Lordian care for self — because that how you keep going. For three years now I’ve been trying to ultimately emigrate, but every time I think it might work there is something that forces me to take a step back and keep recovering, as well as discovering. The more intently I’m looking inwards, the further I can see outwards. The slower I’m proceeding, the more punctual I get. By forgiving myself, I forgive.

Liberation comes from letting go. Stillness enables movement. Every limitation, including my passport and poverty, opens the world to me more and more as I choose to learn from it. Peace of mind is the most radical politics. Simple things can teach you more than all the anticapitalist books ever written. Staring at an ivory-coloured wall can be the most decolonizing activity you have ever engaged in, more benevolent than any anarchist demonstration you’ve ever attended. A singular affect of fury can be cleansing and transformative — but perpetual hate is what, according to Leibniz, turns one into the damned, someone whose soul is so tight it contains nothing but the hate towards the universe. The damned suffer incessantly, and there’s just this one thing they have to do in order to stop suffering: they have to stop vomiting the world, says Deleuze2. How beautiful is that?

The more I’ve been embracing the rundown town N., the further I’ve been finding myself from Ukrainian cultural milieu — and the more I’ve been coming to terms with my Ukrainian passport, with all my Eastern Europen Slavic features and troubles, even with my love for the Russian language. The more I’ve been coming to terms with all of this, the less it’s been getting of an issue at all, and the further my disidentification with state borders has been reaching. The further my disidentification with state borders has been reaching, the keener I’ve started recognizing the beauty of some things inherently Slavic, things that appeal to some pre-national yet culturally distinctive aesthetics — rendered so elegantly by Natalia Goncharova and Igor Stravinsky. I found or revisited my admiration for Ukrainian baroque, for Russian monasteries, for medieval icons, for half Orthodox, half pagan religious celebrations. Not in any sort of nostalgic or identitarian manner at all — but with general curiosity that comes from defamiliarization, from Shklovskian ostranenie.

In real life, leaving Dogville doesn’t take place overnight. And so, the male power figure for a coalition of convenience who would hand me the gun (as required by the screenplay — hope you don’t find it too, um, ‘reactionary’?), was to be found — only in summer 2018 — in my maternal lineage. Had I been, just like Grace, too silly and arrogant? I went through an old little notebook that belonged to my great-grandfather, who had been the head of the Gosbank in N. for decades. I’ve never met him — he died in the 1970s. Written amid telephone numbers and calculations was the following: “A person who doesn't claim to be saintly would never commit a crime”.

Which reminds me


If you want to become whole, first let yourself become broken.
If you want to become straight, first let yourself become twisted.
If you want to become full, first let yourself become empty.
If you want to become new, first let yourself become old.
Those whose desires are few gets them, those whose desires are great go astray.
For this reason the Master embraces the Tao, as an example for the world to follow.
Because she isn’t self centered, people can see the light in her.
Because she does not boast of herself, she becomes a shining example.
Because she does not glorify herself, she becomes a person of merit.
Because she wants nothing from the world, the world cannot overcome her.
When the ancient Masters said, “If you want to become whole, then first let yourself be broken,” they weren’t using empty words.
All who do this will be made complete.3




Perpetual Peace


As a matter of fact, I do have faith in humanity, no matter how problematic this may sound today. In «humans» that, according to Karen Barad, «are neither pure cause nor pure effect but part of the world in its open-ended becoming.»4 We are all transitioning, never not transitioning. «We are all little colonies and it is Oedipus that colonizes us.»5 Every colonizer is also colonized — by the modern dichotomies and prescribed psychic scenarios that claim to be universally valid. But as Xiang Zairong suggests in his exquisite text Transdualism. Toward a Materio-Discursive Embodiment, «while foregrounding non-Western, nonmodern cosmologies as part of an ethical commitment to epistemic diversity a decolonial approach does not mean to overthrow “Western” thinking»6 — it is a matter of seeing how, in the process of its own evolution, continental philosophy has been decolonizing itself, a matter of taking down the imposed hierarchies of this thinking and reappropriating its fruit.

«Walking on beaten paths, she may laugh, and laugh at herself for she may realize she must and she can, at any moment, stray from the itinerary chosen, get rid of many of her fears, and take pleasure in making abrupt turns and repeated detours, so as to outplay her own game, rendering impotent the master's world of refined dissections and classifications.»7 

After all, did you know that Kant spoke against colonization? Literally. Here’s what he wrote in his work Perpetual Peace: A Philosophical Sketchpublished in 1795:

«At how great a distance from this perfection are the civilized nations, and especially the commercial nations of Europe? At what an excess of injustice do we not behold them arrived, when they discover strange countries and nations? (which with them is the same thing as to conquer). America, the countries inhabited by the negroes, the Spice Islands, the Cape, etc. were to them countries without proprietors, for the inhabitants they counted for nothing. Under pretext of establishing factories in Hindustan, they carried thither foreign troops, and by their means oppressed the natives, excited wars among the different states of that vast country; spread famine, rebellion, perfidy, and the whole deluge of evils that afflict mankind, among them. [...] The Chinese and Japanese, whom experience has taught to know Europeans, wisely refuse their entry into the country, though the former permit their approach, which the latter grant to one European nation only, the Dutch; still however, excluding them like captives from every communication with the inhabitants.»8

What are we to do with this? Yes, Kant’s positions did change drastically within less than a decade after he had published his overtly racist considerations in the works of the late 1780s, and further on he did elaborate his anticolonial and antiracist positions in Metaphysics of Morals, published in 1797 9. Is it efficient to see Kant and all his work as a strict opposition, an enemy to what Denise Ferreira da Silva described as ‘black feminist poethics’, particularly in her intriguing text In the Raw10? Or, can we decolonize Kant by deciphering his own transdualism,by clarifying through complicating, by using his letters to serve a black feminist? Can we schizoanalyze Kant? «Schizoanalysis, rather than moving in the direction of reductionist modelisations which simplify the complex, will work towards its complexification, its processual enrichment, towards the consistency of its virtual lines of bifurcation and differentiation, in short towards its ontological heterogeneity».11

As Luciana Parisi stated in an interview several years ago, «[...] there is a lot of work to be done in order to actually say: we shall be going back to the Enlightenment project of reason so as to claim back alien versions of reasoning. But to claim it back requires taking into account the historical moment in which, in the name of reason, patriarchy and colonialism became enterprises of domination. The legacy of reason and the history of instrumental reason need to be debunked and reconstructed, and not just adopted.» 12

«And thus it is necessary to begin again, and again, in the middle of things»13


«She can only build from the visible as she unbuilds the invisible, and vice versa. For when she builds and builds only (positivist affirmation), she runs the risk of expanding his property at her own cost; and when she unbuilds, and unbuilds only (nihilist negation), she tends to fall into the habit of negating for the sake of his alter ego. The space of creativity is the space whose occupancy invites other occupancies. To return to a denied identity and cultural heritage is also to undermine the very notion of identity and ethnicity. Thus, if she negates, it is also to refute negation joyfully.»14

When I speak about decolonization, it comes from the borderland, and my borderland is very different from Gloria Anzaldua’s Borderlands: I’m not aiming to be «a crossroads» (of identities) — I’m interested in «an “unclean,” non-identitarian, undifferentiated deep» 15. When Rosi Braidotti ponders (via Alice Walker on Virginia Woolf), «is this nonchalant detachment not the privilege of caste and whiteness?» 16 — all I can say is, well, no. Coming technically from the European continent, the place I come from is not ‘the West’.

The place I come from is, for instance, a surrogacy farm: a single officially registered clinic would produce 100–150 babies every month, for parents from the US and EU predominantly. My ‘whiteness’ is a shimmering quality, it doesn’t match the ‘whiteness’ of slave owners and land-grabbers, and yet I am keenly aware of what it’s loaded with. My passport makes most border guards double-check my possessions and in many cases implies tedious visa bureaucracy: wherever I go, I’m ‘other countries’. But my ‘otherness’ is too subtle, too indistinguishable to enter the colonizer/colonized binary relationship — it lies in the uncanny valley, a perfect place to speak from in order to show that this is precisely where all the ‘otherness’ and all the ‘sameness’ belong.

This land was never stricto sensu ‘colonized’ by the West (do Greek colonies of the Northern Black Sea in the VIII–III centuries BCE count?). This land used to be partof empires. But a repeated stance — to a certain extent fueled by the post-Cold War Western discourses — that it was colonized by Russia, is quite inaccurate. Ukraine couldn’t be colonized by the Russian Empire — yet in order to make the Russian Empire an Empire enough, it had to be invented and defined as the land that is ‘the same but different’, the uncanny valley (paradoxically, precisely where, as we know, the state that would later become the Russian Empire had been initially founded — by several enterprising Norsemen).

This does not mean that the Russian Empire did not exercise colonial politics (in fact, Russian ruthless expansion eastwards started as early as the XVI century), or that the Soviet Union was not ‘integrating’ the nomadic people of Siberia in the most repressive ways, replacing Buddhist monasteries and shamanism with labor camps and cisterns of spirits brought to the settlements. Madina Tlostanova provides a detailed account of Russian and Soviet colonialism in the Caucasus and Central Asia in its connection with gender politics (including a brilliant and subtle demonstration of how the Western feminisms, as the products of Western modernity, fail to interpret Soviet contexts).17 However, marks Tlostanova, Russia did not belong to «theconfidentempires with a positive masculine identity». Russia is itself a vivid case when «the caution against the absolute division between colonizer and colonized»18 is crucial. Russian princely families of the Yusupovs and the Urusovs were the descendants of Edigu, a Turkic Muslim Emir of the White Horde who invaded Rus’ in the early XV century — Yusupovs derived directly from Yusuf Bey of Nogai Horde. And it is impossible to overlook the fact that Stalin, who brought the Soviet imperialism to its extremes, was born Ioseb Besarionis dze Jughashvili in a small town of Gori in eastern Georgia.


Through the Colon of a Cannibal


«To listen, to see like a stranger in one's own land; to fare like a foreigner across one's own language; or, to maintain an intense rapport with the means and materiality of media languages is also to learn to let go of the (masterly) “hold” as one unbuilds and builds.»19

To decolonize oneself is not to go back to something that existed before colonization. To decolonize (oneself, a place) is to engage in the non-hierarchical relationship with the universe as a unity of phenomena — of matter.20 It ultimately implies the need to see through the colonizer/colonized and oppressor/oppressed dichotomies, to acknowledge the multiplicity of ongoing relations. It implies the need to see that violence and injustice have never been the prerogative of the colonizer and the oppressor. After all, the Aztec people did come up with a legend that the Spanish Conquista was a curse upon it: «because for the same order it had subjugated the other people, it will be kicked out and [stripped of] the dominance it had over others».21 «[T]his death that comes from without is also that which was rising from within».22 Such complexification is not equal to erasing the difference between the victim and the perpetrator — on the contrary, it is what ultimately allows one to distinguish the perpetrator in each particular case regardless of their ideology or mission.

Decolonization is not the return to non-existent «precolonial» relations — it means waking up from a bad dream, waking up from death, overcoming the rigidity of imposed knowledge structures. «Nothing more than a bit of a relation to the outside, a little real reality. And we claim the right to a radical laxity, a radical incompetence — the right to enter the analyst's office and say it smells bad there. It reeks of the great death and the little ego.» 23 Decolonization implies accepting «the challenge of subjectivity» — Marc Yang presents constant becomingas a way to overcome the Self/Other dichotomy (as well as a number of binary oppositions deriving from it and produced by the rationalist «static notion of identity» of the Modern Subject) in the context of the postcolonial condition.24

When Félix Guattari described the production of subjectivity in «Chaosmosis», he turned to the experience of his psychotic patients at La Borde, emphasizing that their treatment, based on collective subjectivation, «[is] not simply a matter of remodelling a patient's subjectivity — as it existed before a psychotic crisis — but of a production sui generis».25 These «complexes of subjectivation», that included a vast variety of activities and responsibilities around La Borde, in Guattari’s understanding «offer people diverse possibilities for recomposing their existential corporeality, to get out of their repetitive impasses and, in a certain way, to resingularise themselves».26 Similarly, decolonization is the production of subjectivity that gets one out of the repetitive impasses of the Modern Subject’s binary. 

For Xiang Zairong, «[t]he point of decolonial feminism is neither suggesting to go back to a precolonial, “original” system of embodiment, nor proposing a generalizable remedy or another universalized truth. It urges us first and foremost to unlearn modern/colonial categories with which we operate seemingly inevitably by learning to learn from the diverse experiences of resistance (as sites of continuous repression), which rely on cosmologies and gender systems that do not always presume the universal validity of “binary opposition,” “hierarchical categorization,” “sexual difference found in language,” or “patriarchy”».27

There is no ‘before’. Production of subjectivity begins with getting lost. But getting lost also implies losing your adversary, making it disintegrate as an adversary by virtue of your mutual trans-integration, as the constructive undoing of binary oppositions would presuppose. There are no just wars. The only way to win a war is to lay down your weapons, to stop fighting (yourself).

«I’m not opting for any direct action against representation, but for a micropolitics of disidentification, a kind of experimentation that doesn’t have faith in representation as an exteriority that will bring truth or happiness.»28

To decolonize oneself is to stop feeling guilty, to stop enjoying misery. For once, try not thinking about the distribution of objects and ideas, try not thinking about signifiers, try not thinking of yourself as a signifier. Think of those who are alive, who are right there next to you, across the wall, across the street, or, perhaps, miles away, thinking of you — as who? Think of yourself. Think of cleansing yourself from the filth you are processing and spreading on a daily basis. When was the last time you felt envy? When was the last time you felt jealousy? When was the last time you felt fear? When was the last time you lied? When was the last time you cried? When was the last time you died? When was the last time you helped a parent, a friend, a neighbor, a partner, a stranger? Do you hate yourself? Are you ashamed? Do you get high on suffering? Does pain turn you on? Are you alive? What does your body feel like?

Now look!

The Empire

does not

exist.

«“Then it really has happened, after all! And now, who am I? I will remember, if I can! I’m determined to do it!” But being determined didn’t help her much, and all she could say, after a great deal of puzzling, was, “L, I know it begins with L!29



Lesia Prokopenko is a researcher and writer with a curatorial background, Senior Editor at EastEast online magazine. She is currently studying Chinese Philosophy at East China Normal University in Shanghai.




[0] Carroll, Lewis. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1865)in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass. New York: Barnes & Noble Classics, 2004, 140–141.

[1] Cristopher Columbus, that is. Have a look at some insightful comments on that in: Xiang, Zairong. Queer Ancient Ways. A Decolonial Exploration. Earth, Milky Way: punctum books, 2018, 115.

[2] Deleuze, Gilles. Sur Leibniz. Les principes et la liberté. Cours Vincennes — St Denis: la taverne. Cours du 24/02/1987. https://www.webdeleuze.com/textes/139

[3] Lao Tzu. Tao Te Ching, translated by J. H. McDonald. http://tao-in-you.com/lao-tzu-tao-te-ching-chapter-22/

[4] Barad, Karen. “Posthumanist Performativity: Toward an Understanding of How Matter Comes to Matter.” Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society, vol. 28, no. 3 (2003): 821.

[5] Deleuze, Gilles, and Guattari, Félix. Anti-Oedipus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1983, 265.

[6] Xiang, Zairong. “Transdualism. Toward a Materio-Discursive Embodiment.” TSQ: Transgender Studies Quarterly, Volume 5, No. 3 (2018): 439.

[7] Minh-ha, Trinh T. “The World As Foreign Land” in When the Moon Waxes Red. Representation, Gender, and Cultural Politics. New York and London: Routledge, 1991, 188.

[8] Kant, Immanuel. Perpetual Peace. San Diego: The Book Tree, 2009, 37–38.

[9] For a full account of these transformations, read Kleingeld, Pauline. “Kant’s Second Thoughts on Race”, The Philosophical Quarterly Vol. 57, no. 229 (2009). https://blog.ufba.br/kant/files/2009/11/265165411.pdf


[10] Ferreira da Silva, Denise. “In the Raw.” e-flux journal, No. 93 (2018). https://www.e-flux.com/journal/93/215795/in-the-raw/


[11] Guattari, Félix. Chaosmosis. Translated by Paul Bains and Julian Pefanis. Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 1995, 61.


[12] Panayotov, Stanimir. “To Engineer the Time by Other Means: Interview with Luciana Parisi,” Figure/Ground, 2016. http://figureground.org/fg/a-conversation-with-luciana-parisi/


[13] Tsing, Anna Lowenhaupt. Friction: An Ethnography of Global Connection. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press, 2005, 2.


[14] Minh-ha, Trinh T. “The World As Foreign Land” in When the Moon Waxes Red. Representation, Gender, and Cultural Politics. New York and London: Routledge, 1991, 187.


[15] Xiang, Zairong. Queer Ancient Ways. A Decolonial Exploration. Earth, Milky Way: punctum books, 2018, 99.


[16] Braidotti, Rosi. Nomadic Subjects. Embodiment and Sexual Difference in Contemporary Feminist Theory. New York: Columbia University Press, 1994, 21.


[17] Tlostanova, Madina. “Non-European Soviet Ex-Colonies and the Coloniality of Gender, or How to Unlearn Western Feminism in Eurasian Borderlands” in Madina V. Tlostanova and Walter D. Mignolo. Learning to Unlearn. Decolonial Reflections from Eurasia and the Americas.Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 2012, 122–149.


[18] Xiang, Zairong. Queer Ancient Ways. A Decolonial Exploration. Earth, Milky Way: punctum books, 2018, 116.


[19] Minh-ha, Trinh T. “The World As Foreign Land” in When the Moon Waxes Red. Representation, Gender, and Cultural Politics. New York and London: Routledge, 1991, 199.

[20] Karen Barad describes it as follows: «On an agential realist account, matter does not refer to a fixed substance; rather, matter is substance in its intra-active becoming — not a thing, but a doing, a congealing of agency. Matter is a stabilizing and destabilizing process of iterative intra-activity. Phenomena — the smallest material units (relational “atoms”) — come to matter through this process of ongoing intra-activity. That is, matter refers to the materiality/materialization of phenomena, not to an inherent fixed property of abstract independently existing objects of Newtonian physics (the modernist realization of the Democritean dream of atoms and the void).» Barad, Karen. “Posthumanist Performativity: Toward an Understanding of How Matter Comes to Matter.” Signs: Journal of Women in Culture and Society, vol. 28, no. 3 (2003): 822.


[21] Xiang, Zairong. Queer Ancient Ways. A Decolonial Exploration. Earth, Milky Way: punctum books, 2018, 209.


[22] Deleuze, Gilles, and Guattari, Félix. Anti-Oedipus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1983, 195.

[23] Deleuze, Gilles, and Guattari, Félix. Anti-Oedipus: Capitalism and Schizophrenia. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1983, 334.

[24] Yang, Marc. “Co-creating with Michel Tournier, Embracing Constant Becoming, and Rehabilitating Subjectivity” in Dalhousie French Studies, Vol. 99 (2012): 71.

[25] Guattari, Félix. Chaosmosis. Translated by Paul Bains and Julian Pefanis. Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 1995, 6.

[26] Ibid. 7


[27] Xiang, Zairong. Queer Ancient Ways. A Decolonial Exploration. Earth, Milky Way: punctum books, 2018, 144.

[28] Preciado, Paul B. [published as: Preciado, Beatriz.] Testo Junkie. Sex, Drugs, and Biopolitics in the Pharmacopornographic Era. New York: The Feminist Press at the City University of New York, 2013, 398.


[29]  Carroll, Lewis. Through the Looking-Glass (1871)in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass. New York: Barnes & Noble Classics, 2004, 185.