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Chapter 3 presents a speculative-historical method of archival reading through the figure of the “nonfossil” (in contrast to the fossil), which highlights the discontinuities, the rupture, the abandonment, and what is lost to the archive, or could never enter its raced and gendered spaces but may yet be present in the future. It argues that archives must also be read through their generative energy, not just their carceral geo-logics. It examines the representational violence of metaepistemic narratives of material forms that are grouped under the sign of the inhuman in the “American school” of racialized paleontology. Pushing into that category of inhuman-inhumane, the chapter explores how material worlds can becomes sites of (re)valuation that tie together life-forms and forms of earth.

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