In 1985, finding that feminism and Marxism had “run aground,” scientist and philosopher Donna Haraway published “A Cyborg Manifesto,” proposing “a creature in a post-gender world.” Arguing for “pleasure in the confusion of boundaries and for responsibility in their construction,” Haraway asserts that “we are all . . . fabricated hybrids of machine and organism; in short, we are cyborgs.” When French artist, writer, and teacher Lili Reynaud-Dewar arrived in Memphis in 2009 to find billboards advertising “grillz,” she interpreted this practice of adornment as a manifestation of Haraway’s vision of hybridity. Grills––gold, silver, or platinum jewelry, sometimes studded with precious stones, and worn on the teeth––first appeared in New York City’s hip-hop scene in the late 1970s and took off in the ’90s with Southern rap. Looking something like oral prostheses, grills alter the
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