The Crip is one of thirty cards in the Asian American Tarot, an original deck of tarot cards I curated as part of my hybrid book arts project on mental health, Open in Emergency (first published in 2016 and then in an expanded second edition in 2019/2020). Each card names an archetype that structures the psychic and material life of Asian Americans, and draws upon knowledge production in Asian American studies and Asian American communities to theorize that archetype’s shape and reach. Each features original art and text, a collaboration between a visual artist and a scholar or literary writer. Each ends with guidance, a gentle directive to the reader for what to do now that they have drawn this card in a tarot reading. The Asian American Tarot is art-meets-scholarship-meets-wellness-practice-equals-magic-for-our-times. The Crip is the twenty-sixth card in the major arcana, and it is here welcoming us all on our disability journeys.
The Crip Tarot Card
Matt Huynh is a Sydney-born, New York-based visual artist and storyteller. His illustrated essays, comics, and animations interrogate the vast impression of war, with a particular focus on amplifying diasporic voices, telling refugee narratives, and the experiences of asylum seekers and migrant communities. Huynh’s paintings, comics, and murals have been exhibited by the MoMA, the Smithsonian, and New York Historical Society.
Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha is a queer, disabled, nonbinary femme poet, memoirist, and disability and transformative justice movement worker of Burgher/Tamil Sri Lankan and Irish/Roma ascent. She is the Lambda Award–winning author or coeditor of nine books, including (coedited with Ejeris Dixon) Beyond Survival: Strategies and Stories from the Transformative Justice Movement (2020), Tonguebreaker (2019), Bridge of Flowers (2019), Care Work: Dreaming Disability Justice (2018), Dirty River (2015), and Bodymap (2015). Since 2009, she has been a lead artist with the disability justice performance collective Sins Invalid.
Mimi Khúc is a writer, scholar, and teacher of things unwell. She is the managing editor of The Asian American Literary Review, a DC-based arts non-profit, and the 2019–21 Scholar/Artist/Activist in Residence in Disability Studies at Georgetown University.
Matt Hyunh, Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha, curated by Mimi Khúc; The Crip Tarot Card. South Atlantic Quarterly 1 April 2021; 120 (2): 389–391. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/00382876-8916130
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