Aliia N. Nizamova

European University at Saint Petersburg, Russia

Articles. Research

This paper focuses on the analysis of the contemporary longevity research as a quest for “the key” to extension of the human lifespan in nature. It questions the ways in which the cultural images and the material bodies of the (non)ageing animals have been used so far to shape the imaginary of the future of the humankind which “defeats” ageing. The two cases of such treatment are examined: the negligibly senescent lobster, and the genetically altered mouse. This paper suggests to engage with critical gerontology and queer ecological thinking to analysing the discourse on longevity research as a site of human-nonhuman entanglement in which heterosexism, ageism, and speciesism intersect. The theoretical discussions of heteronormative temporality, chrononormativity, and reproductive futurism further inform the critical understanding of the normative representation of the life course supported through the current futurist imaginary of longevity. In conclusion, the article suggests opening a discussion of the ways in which the experimental thinking with the nonhuman creatures could encourage a more inclusive understanding of ageing in future which challenges ageism, anthropocentrism, and (hetero)normativity.


Keywords: queer ecology, queer theory, longevity, heteronormative temporality, ageism, anthropocentrism