ID: A 40ish mixed race Sri Lankan, Irish and Galician nonbinary  femme with curly brown silver and purple hair, lying on a couch looking at the viewer horizontally. They have rose gold aviator frames, thick eyebrows, red lipstick and sand colored skin, and are looking at the viewer with a kind of tired but hopefully crip wonder. They wear a blue denim vest with a pin that says Neurodivergent Universe above a pink and blue image of a ringed planet, and a black tank top with yellow lettering that read Talk To Plants, Not Cops is barely visible. They have a tattoo of the words "We begin by listening" in magenta cursive script on their left arm. Book cover of THE FUTURE IS DISABLED: LOVE NOTES AND MOURNING SONGS. Conversation partners Lilac Vylette Maldonado and Tasha Fierce.



*Please note: This event will take place live on Crowdcast. RSVP here to join the livestream or watch the replay.

ASL and CART services will be provided for this event!

The Future is Disabled: Prophecies, Love Notes, and Mourning Songs (Arsenal Pulp Press)

In The Future Is Disabled, Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha asks some provocative questions: What if, in the near future, the majority of people will be disabled―and what if that's not a bad thing? And what if disability justice and disabled wisdom are crucial to creating a future in which it's possible to survive fascism, climate change, and pandemics and to bring about liberation Building on the work of her game changing book Care Work: Dreaming Disability Justice, Piepzna-Samarasinha writes about disability justice at the end of the world, documenting the many ways disabled people kept and are keeping each other―and the rest of the world―alive during Trump, fascism and the COVID-19 pandemic. Other subjects include crip interdependence, care and mutual aid in real life, disabled community building, and disabled art practice as survival and joy.

Written over the course of two years of disabled isolation during the pandemic, this is a book of love letters to other disabled QTBIPOC (and those concerned about disability justice, the care crisis, and surviving the apocalypse); honor songs for kin who are gone; recipes for survival; questions and real talk about care, organizing, disabled families, and kin networks and communities; and wild brown disabled femme joy in the face of death. With passion and power, The Future Is Disabled remembers our dead and insists on our future.

 Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha (she/they)  is a nonbinary femme autistic disabled writer, space creator and disability and transformative justice movement worker of Burgher and Tamil Sri Lankan, Irish and Galician/Roma ascent. They are the author or co-editor of ten books, including (co-edited with Ejeris Dixon) Beyond Survival; Strategies and Stories from the Transformative Justice Movement, Tonguebreaker, Care Work: Dreaming Disability Justice, and Bodymap.

A Lambda Award winner who has been shortlisted for the Publishing Triangle five times, she is winner of  Lambda’s 2020 Jean Cordova Award “honoring a lifetime of work documenting the complexities of queer of color/ disabled/ femme experience.” They are a 2020-2021 Disability Futures Fellow and a member of the YBCA 105. Since 2009, they have been a lead performer with disability justice performance collective Sins Invalid; since 2020 they have been on the programming committee of the Disability and Intersectionality Summit. 

Raised in rust belt central Massachusetts and shaped by T’karonto and Oakland, they are currently at work building Living Altars/ The Stacey Park Milbern Liberation Arts Center, a disabled QTBIPOC writers space and accessible writers retreat for disabled BIPOC creators.  They are a haggard porch and couch witch and a very unprofessional adaptive trike rider. 

Lilac Vylette Maldonado (she/they) is a community organizer and culture worker who identifies as a disabled, Two-Spirit, intersex Chicanx femme who has been actively organizing for over a decade around many intersecting social justice issues such as racial, gender & disability justice, LGBTQIA+ issues, and more. https://linktr.ee/lilacvylette

Tasha Fierce (they/them/the divine feminine) is an infinite being, a sick & disabled queer Black femme artist, a writer, mystic, educator, and facilitator, and a transition doula, born and raised in the occupied Tongva/Kizh territory known as Los Angeles county and currently residing there in Pasadena, California. Their critical work has been published in Bitch Magazine, among other outlets, their poetry has been published in UCLA’s Westwind, and their fiction has been published in the anthology Nothing Without Us. You can learn more about their art and writing at tashafierce.com and their healing work at liberatedtransitions.org, and you can follow them on IG as @tashajfierce.

Founded in 2016, Los Angeles Spoonie Collective is a grassroots disability justice organization dedicated to empowering the 2SLGBTQIA+ disabled, chronically ill, mad, and neurodivergent communities, educating the world, and ending ableism.

LASC accomplishes this work through multimedia educational workshops like Disability Justice 101 and Ableism in the Professional Sphere, community-building events such as Spoonie Open Mic and Zine Book Club, and advocacy efforts like their Limitless Letters program–a pen pal program aimed at reducing isolation and building solidarity by connecting incarcerated 2SLGBTQIA+ individuals with disabled, chronically ill, mad, and neurodivergent 2SLGBTQIA+ folks on the outside.

To learn more, visit www.spooniecollective.org. You can also follow LASC on IG at @la.spoonie.collective, on Facebook at @LASpoonyCollective, and on Twitter at @LASpoonies.

Please reach out to the Events Team at events@skylightbooks.com with any event questions.

Praise for The Future is Disabled -

"The Future Is Disabled is a timely and necessary collection of essays about what disability justice is, has been, and could be. It contains the disabled stories, secrets, knowledge, humor, and creativity that we need now and what we will need to create the just futures we deserve. The brown cripqueer femme love and hope and rage and grief contained in these pages is astounding and necessary - a gift to us all. It's the kind of book you dog-ear, write in, quote from memory, and pass along to every disabled-even-if-they-don’t-use-that-word friend, lover, comrade, and fellow artist you hope to make a better world with. It's a community building tool and a personal balm for anyone invested in collective liberation, especially disabled people of color. Buy it. Read it. Pass it on." - Sami Schalk, author of Black Disability Politics

"The Future is Disabled is the kind of world-making that has until now been reserved for science fiction. This book is committed to community, blazingly experimental, and embedded in the practical work of everyday disability justice. It speaks in a multitude of voices from words of wisdom, interludes, herbal remedies, recipes, 'autistic longform' and access riders to provide clear instructions on how disabled people can get free. Throughout this groundbreaking work, Piepzna-Samarasinha finds meaning in recent history, and leaves readers with no doubt that the disabled future is now. They have provided us with a primer, a language, a lucid image, and a guide to disability justice, one of the most vital and rapidly expanding movements of our time. With reverence for the work of their contemporaries, elders, and the next generation of disability justice thinkers, Piepzna-Samarasinha sets out to honor, elegize, and create 'disabled and chronically ill citizen scientists.' The Future is Disabled will leave any crip saying, 'I could be disabled like that.'" - Cyree Jarelle Johnson, author of Slingshot

"The Future is Disabled moves us past disability as an identity category, or awareness of disability justice as an anti-oppression check mark. By addressing her beloved community on her own terms, Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha teaches us that disability justice is a possible world that already exists, full of the love we deserve and the complexity we already embody." -Alexis Pauline Gumbs, author of Undrowned: Black Feminist Lessons from Marine Mammals

"Groundbreaking, hilarious, and brilliantly written, this book is a vital manual for navigating disabled grief, joy, and survival in pandemic times. If you need advice on how to crip mutual aid, how to make revolutionary disabled art, or how to make some really good chicken soup, this book has you covered. The Future is Disabled cements Piepzna-Samarasinha's status as one of the most important disability thinkers of our generation. They make the disabled future absolutely irresistible." - Jina B. Kim, assistant professor of English and of the Study of Women and Gender, Smith College

"Leah Lakshmi Piepzna Samarasinha has created a guidebook for Deaf, Mad and disabled activists and artists everywhere - a love letter to all of us in these times of change and speculative futures turned into lived realities. The Future Is Disabled dares to dream of a different kind of future- and asks us to consider how we will show up for each other in these new realities. There are stories about our newly passed on kin, and strategies for building mutual aid and DJ groups from scratch. This book is everything we need in a moment of profound change, and at a time when the disabled and Mad futures described by Octavia Butler are settling in around us. Thank you, Leah, for helping us to dream, and helping us to consider what we need to do to survive into the future." - Syrus Marcus Ware, co-editor of Until We Are Free: Black Lives Matter in Canada

Event date: 
Wednesday, November 2, 2022 - 6:00pm
Event address: 
1818 N Vermont Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90027
The Future Is Disabled: Prophecies, Love Notes and Mourning Songs By Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha Cover Image
ISBN: 9781551528915
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Arsenal Pulp Press - October 4th, 2022