Toxic Capture: Rendering Difficult Subjects Visible


Toxic Capture




Creative Commons Licence



Created date

January 15, 2019

Critical Commentary

This essay seeks to expand theorization on toxicity by tracing the ways in which "toxic injury" and "toxic stress" have emerged as categories for clinical and juridicial claims making. I am particularly interested in the ways in which toxic injury as is both enrolled and undermined as a useful explanatory model for conditions which resist diagnosis. Given the ways in which toxic subjects are rendered invisible by dominant understandings of transmission, injury, and time, new forms of visualization and reading are called for. The images I include seek to illustrate the various tools patients and clinicians use in order to render toxic conditions visible in both clinical and legal domains.  Through these images I hope to demonstrate the promise and difficulty of “toxic capture.”

Morgan, Alli. 2019. “Toxic Capture: Rendering Difficult Subjects Visible.” In Visualizing Toxic Subjects Digital Exhibit, curated by James Adams and Kim Fortun. The Center for Ethnography. March.