Accepted Paper:

Germline Ruptures: Methyl Isocyanate Gas and Transpositions of Life, Death, and Matter in Bhopal  


Deboleena Roy (Emory University)

Paper short abstract:

As MIC continues to exert reproductive health effects in Bhopal, the surrogacy market is growing in this city. Tracing the breakdown of Bhopali survivors’ reproductive bodies due to MIC exposure, this paper explores MIC as a catalyst for the placental migration of transnational biopolitics.

Paper long abstract:

As methyl isocyanate continues to exert its effects on the reproductive biology of women, men, and children in Bhopal, remarkably, there is a growing market of in vivo human labor developing in this city that depends precisely on the promissory futures made possible by the remaining potential for reproductive value that exists in this very same population and location. By tracing the breakdown of Bhopali survivors' reproductive bodies, their chromosomes, and their bodily fluids due to MIC exposure, and by simultaneously examining the embryonic development of new fetal bodies through genetic materials and proteins provided by surrogate women, my aim is to explore the compound MIC as a catalyst for the placental migration of transnational biopolitics. By conducting an analysis of these entanglements and ruptures - genetic, reproductive, and otherwise - my hope is to contribute to interdisciplinary conversations between feminist science and technology studies (STS), postcolonial STS, and new materialisms.

Panel T051
Feminist Postcolonial STS