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Posthuman Studies Lab

Sutirtho Roy

Nature Artwork

Sutirtho Roy is an Early Career Scholar who has co-authored an anthology of poetry, and written a novel which has garnered positive reviews from Inkitt and Webnovel. In his free time, he does toy photography and webcomic designing on his well-renowned Instagram page, which he has slowly started to integrate with his research areas. He has served as a panellist at international workshops pertaining to post-humanism, and his papers have been selected for publication in journals like Routledge, Cambridge, BRILL, Springer and Lexington Books. Through his research, he aims to recognize the various potentials of storytelling and linguistic frameworks to advocate for non-human animal welfare, along with social upliftment and environmental conservation. As such, his primary research area centers on post-human/ post-anthropocentric ways of depicting non-humans, or critiquing the anthropocentric ways of their depictions through the analysis of different media and theoretical paradigms.

The Creator in the Creation: Fractured Selves in a Liminal Space, Seen Through a Meta-textual Lens of World-building

The creator has shared an interesting relationship with the creation since time immemorial – the architect with the building, the author with the story, the child with the lump of clay that may have been shaped by his or her hands into an entity that only makes sense to that child but not to the more rigid world of adults. In building worlds – through stories, through revolutionary forms of architecture, through films, through Lego-scapes and even simply through the imagination, the creator has enjoyed a transcendental position of power over the creation, through a demonstrative ability to manipulate the creation as per their whims. The purpose of this study is to look at the very nature of world building itself, and attempt to embrace a post-human, post-dualistic relationship of the world with its builder which rethinks the power differentials.

This research, therefore aims to look at critical and artistic works which testify to the same – including my own web comics (created through toy photography) and novels. My own work embraces an inter-connective relationality between disparate media and virtual spaces –photographs, written text, images, videos, memes and traced drawings – while the protagonists in my novel are post-human in the very way they attempt to see beyond the ‘Self’/’Other’ binary to attempt an existence in a Harroway-esque multi-species assemblage which consciously holds up a lens to critical animal studies in a post-humanist world. Therefore, my characters embrace post-humanism, which is a subtle adoption of the authorial intent, linking the creation and the creator in a manner that locates the creator in the creation, rather than above and beyond it. A popular debate is that one cannot separate the text from the author, and such seems to question the very dualistic nature of the creator/ creation boundary.

I also hope, through my work and others, to highlight the conscious placement of author’s selves in their works, through cameo appearances and crossovers. This created self is the author himself or herself, and exists in a fragmentary liminal space as both, the creator and the created, a manipulated self that is self-sustained within the work. We are parts of the world we build, whether consciously or not – such may also be linked in authorial desires to immortalize the self or loved ones (as in Shakespeare’s Sonnets or Tennyson’s In Memoriam).

Furthermore, this study seeks to use this entire scenario as an analogy to negotiate with the place we occupy in terms of any possible higher powers that may or may not exist. Finally, it looks at the linguistic and cognitive aspects which come into play while delving into the dialectics of such reality.

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