Bodies matter. The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic four years ago violently brought to the fore that truth, simple and inconvenient to the dominative order, that millions already knew from their interactions with the healthcare system to their brutalization by the state. And, four years away from the beginning of that pandemic, disability studies, health humanities, and critical theory continue to grapple with a public that seems driven to forget. The four works reviewed in this section each wrestle with the mattering of the body/mind along four distinct axes. While their subjects are diverse, all are deeply concerned with how we negotiate the mattering of bodies and minds across time—past, present, and future.

This section begins with Shannon Potter’s review of Julie Avril Minich’s Radical Health, a book that aims to understand how Latinx communities in the United States have come to intertwine their fight for racial justice with their fight for justice in healthcare and wellness spaces. In her review, Potter homes in on another commingling that runs under and within Minich’s consideration of Latinx wellness: the tangling of where we are with where we can go. In other words, Potter centers in her review how Minich’s insights about the present are always tethered to the possibility such insights have for the future.

Following this initial taking-stock, Paige Welsh considers a work with a backward-looking eye: Emma Kowal’s Haunting Biology. Welsh emphasizes the centrality of haunting to Kowal’s work, considering the ways in which the study of human biology’s racist history continues to haunt biological science in the present and into the future. The result is a book Welsh characterizes as being as “risky” as it is provocative.

Having looked to the past, Giulia A. Oprea’s review of Samuel Ginsburg’s The Cyborg Caribbean leaps, once more, to the future with a consideration of science fiction produced by Caribbean cultural creators. Oprea foregrounds Ginsberg’s suggestion that Caribbean science fiction mobilizes depictions of technologies historically used to dominate and marginalize in order to undermine that very domination. Ginsburg’s book, then, is one Oprea characterizes as engrossed by science fiction as a cultural enterprise unbound by temporality.

This section toggles back and forth between past and future, tradition and potential, but we close this section with Debarati Roy’s review of Hershini Bhana Young’s Falling, Floating, Flickering, a book that takes up movement itself as it is mobilized in “African diasporic performance.” Roy’s review highlights the “complexity” of Young’s book, which draws on a wide range of theoretical interlocutors to suggest African diasporic performers use movement to disrupt normative ideas of the body. Through such movement, spaces open to resist racist and colonial hegemony in a manner enmeshed with resistance to ableist cultural and political force.

Such a small slice of scholarly work on disabled experiences and on the study and depiction of the body/mind cannot, of course, fully represent all that can be said about disability. But as one reads these reviews, one feels a restlessness that cannot be calmed, and it is in this restlessness we find the core of where we are now. All four of these reviews writhe under a history that continues to harm but also vibrate and pulse with the pain and joy of what can be made with that history. How do we move from here to there and from now to later? The answers are innumerable but they begin with that truth that cannot be ignored. Bodies matter. The future matters as much as the past.