‘When the Sick Rule the World’ by Dodie Bellamy

I love Dodie Bellamy’s essays. They always have such serpentine structures, making a virtue of digression, which then turns out to be what the piece is about. They personify the disobedience and bloody mindedness of the wayward body and they detail what it means – in intimate physical detail – to live in the world of the sick. They are also very funny. One moment they are about giving a paper at the MLA, the next she has her arm in Eileen Myles’ toilet. In this, the title essay of the collection, she considers what it might mean when the ‘sick rule the world’ with a rhythm and an insistence that is both truthful and moving and drily funny. 

First published in When the Sick Rule the World, Semiotext(e), 2015. An extract is available online here