After the Nonhuman Turn

On the day after the Nonhuman Turn conference I went for a walk up Lake Drive.  I had an experience that I often have; you’ve probably had it, too. Walking on the right of the sidewalk, I regularly have runners pass me on the left. Sometimes two or more of them run talking together; my body tracks them with my ears as they approach and then overtake me. Sometimes I catch the sound of feet on concrete just before a silent runner or two pass me by. But other times, and this is the experience that interests me, I find myself turning my body and attention suddenly to the left, with no perception or consciousness of the runner who suddenly emerges at my side and runs past. In these latter cases my body makes a nonhuman turn, prior to and independent of either perception or cognition, as I only become aware of the runner after my nonhuman turn.


About rgrusin

I am an Academic Entrepreneur and Professor of English at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
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