What′s the Use? On the Uses of Use
by Sara Ahmed
Duke University Press
Published October, 2019
What’s the Use: On the Uses of Use
‘What’s the use?’ is an irresistible refrain when living under the illegitimate jurisdiction of so-called Australia. It is difficult to break the patterns of non-consent, policing, and harm when the poor and marginalised have to constantly fight for their survival, and prove their utility-value to the state.
Refresh; new update
Then came the day another week began, and it was a new month, and there was no end in sight. The dream, the shock, the is-this-really-happening: all of this started to wear off and at the same time started to intensify. New words and phrases emerged: hibernation, the other side, the bridge. And the old words—images of war remained top of the pops. This unseen enemy within, the frontline troops, our heroes.
Between 1935 and 1939, the Federal Writers’ Project – an initiative funded by the Works Project Administration under the New Deal – provided employment for some 6000 jobless writers. Today, as stunned authors in Australia and around the world come to terms with the economic consequences of the coronavirus pandemic, that experiment deserves reconsideration.
January 2020: Learn to Swim Drowning
My first response to COVID-19 was not to go back home. Home for me is in the Hunan province in the south of China, next to Hubei. It had been a difficult decision to make. The virus coincided with the Chinese New Year; it was like a bomb thrown into a mine field. But I also knew that it was the time when I was most needed at home.