In this article, I investigate the logic of prognostic certainty by examining the media's enactment of Zika through four media moments: The Olympics, The Pope, The Senate, and The Millennials. Prognostic certainty refers to the idea that once we diagnose a body (fetus, child, adult) with a condition, we can predict the outcome of that condition on the living subject, regardless of sociocultural circumstances. In utilizing disability theory from Alison Kafer, Eli Clare, and Alexis Shotwell, I propose a politics of prognostic un/certainty in relation to Zika. If we embrace this politics of contagion in relation to Zika, we can enact a radical openness that allows space for Zika-affected children to thrive by providing comprehensive healthcare and creating a social world that eliminates as many barriers to inclusion for disabled bodies as possible. Yet with this comes the need for comprehensive scientific information about Zika and interventions to prevent Zika from affecting some populations more than others; embracing a radical openness about Zika does not mean ignoring its contagion but analyzing where and how it spreads and creating interventions that transcend national borders. Prognostic un/certainty captures the tensions that emerge by holding all of these values simultaneously.


Additional Information

Print ISSN
pp. 164-183
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
Back To Top

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Without cookies your experience may not be seamless.