Participation is a little discussed or researched concept in the social sciences, despite its importance in understanding activism. This article presents some theoretical and methodological considerations for promoting social participation and agency for disabled people through the work of psychologists associated with Brazilian public policies. This article takes the form of a discursive study, based on the dialogue between: a) Brazilian legislation on disability; b) Bader Sawaia’s Ethical-Political Psychology; and c) Disability Studies. Based on the assumption that psychological practices should promote participation and agency for disabled people, we present the elements that hinder or control participation. We then present theoretical methodological contributions to build practices that promote participation and agency, highlighting: a) critiques of moral and biomedical models of disability; b) understandings of disability from intersectional perspectives that incorporate it as a category of analysis; c) including disabled people in the construction of research and professional practices disabled people and d) the rupture with ableism, which blocks the participation of disabled people. Participation has shown to be a multidimensional concept that covers a spectrum of aspects – from the practice of activism to the constitution of subjectivity in disabled people.
Disability & the Global South (DGS), 2019, Vol. 6 No. 2