Shona McCombes *1991
In the twenty-first century, what counts as natural has something to do with autonomy; it has something to do with vitality; it has something to do with death. Cull approaches these somethings through the signifying structure of the wild – an amalgamation of fact and fiction, utopia and dystopia. It starts in Scotland, among wildcats and deer and pigeons, but it is migrating through Dutch landscapes and changing shape in the process. Scotland and the Netherlands are both man-made places, and their modern desires for resurgent wildness crystallise in images of death: a shot deer, a starved horse, a stripped tree. What does it mean to save a species, to restore an ecology, to make nature natural again? Does a rotting carcass mean nourishment or neglect? Who gets to choose? This collection of short narratives will follow untended paths to explore strange new modes of killing and caring in the Anthropocene.
Shona McCombes is a writer and editor from Scotland, currently based in Utrecht. She has an MLitt in Modernities and an MA in Gender Studies. She is interested in bodies, landscapes, language and power.