The authors of this paper have protested, fought, written extensively and represent the broader theoretical foundations of Indigenous and disability research by focusing on their standpoint perspectives informed by their ancestral spirits and knowledge. Based on our knowledge, cultures, and advocacy skills, this paper collectively explores and compares the intersections of Indigeneity and disability as an embodied identity in four countries: USA, Canada, Sweden, and Australia. This is accomplished by beginning with a brief synopsis of colonization to provide context and then examine the consequences of Western assimilation practices, including academic support of the Western status quo. The paper will then turn to the impact of both colonization and academic constructs on Indigenous epistemologies and ideas of self in disability dialogues. Finally, the paper will focus on Indigenous concepts of difference to not only advance Western disability discussions, but also as a way for Western dialogue to overcome its predilection to hierarchical binaries.
This article invites readers to engage with girls and women with disabilities in the global South. It challenges the epistemological domination of Western disability studies in Southern bodies and contexts, and provides one specific way to read the intersection between disability, gender, and ethnicity in the context of Vietnam. Drawing on the politics of engagement developed within the Transforming Disability Knowledge, Research, and Activism project, we argue for recognizing the lingering impacts of colonialism and imperialism in producing disability and impairment in the South, while suggesting new ways of engaging with disabled girls and women through the use of inclusive, decolonial, and participatory methods.
Despite disability rights being recognized through formal legislation in Bangladesh, the rights of persons with disabilities are still not effectively ensured. State interventions during the pandemic have not sufficiently accommodated the rights of Persons with Disabilities. Pre-existing social prejudices have added to their plight. Due to social prejudice and myriad access to justice challenges, persons with disabilities in Bangladesh face negative attitudes when it comes to exercising their legal rights. The article uses primary data obtained through qualitative interviews and secondary sources to illustrate how the Covid19 pandemic has reinforced structural discriminations and increased the vulnerability of persons with disabilities
The Philosophy, Disability and Social Change online conference comprises presentations by disabled philosophers whose cutting-edge research challenges members of the philosophical community to:
- think more critically about the metaphysical and epistemological status of disability;
- closely examine how philosophy of disability is related to the tradition and discipline of philosophy;
- acknowledge the continuing exclusion of disabled philosophers from the profession of philosophy;
- seriously consider how philosophy and philosophers contribute to the pervasive inequality and subordination that disabled people confront throughout society;
- develop mechanisms designed to transform the current professional and institutional position of disabled philosophers in particular and the economic, political and social position of disabled people more generally.
The presentations will highlight the diversity and range of approaches to critical philosophical work on disability and showcase the heterogeneity with respect to race, gender, nationality, sexuality, gender identity, culture, age and class of the community of disabled philosophers.
This conference is organised as part of the Alfred Landecker Programme at the Blavatnik School of Government.
- Unmaking disability: Philosophy and social change
- African communitarian philosophy and disability in African contexts
- Dis/ableist inheritance
- Ageism, ableism and the power of the double bind
- Philosophy, the apparatus of disability, and the nursing-home industrial complex
- Neurodiversity and the pathology paradigm
- A neurodiversity paradigm for moral responsibility
- Cheap talk: Stuttering, trolls and talking heads
- Vulnerability to COVID-19 and the moral perniciousness of congregate care
- Captivity, carceral logics, and disposability
- Chronic fatigue as adversity under capitalism
- Phenomenologies of debilitation and questions of volition
- 'He's not worth it': The deleterious character of the disabled Black male
- COVID-19 as crisis
- Risking ourselves: The politics and persons of risk
Purpose: An evaluation of a disability equality training (DET) programme, based on the social model of disability, was conducted to explore the changes in the participants’ attitudes and behaviours in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.
Methods: This study is composed of two parts. First, the participants’ attitude changes during DET sessions were examined through a descriptive quantitative and qualitative analysis of questionnaires and related documents. Second, thebehavioural changes at the organisational and individual levels, the impact on society, and related factors were explored by quantitative and qualitative analysis of good practice cases: 39 participants were selected through purposive sampling and semi-structured interviews were conducted.
Results: It was found that most participants adopted the social model perspective within these sessions. A qualitative content analysis of the good practice cases also found that the majority of participants attempted to change their social environments after the sessions. Thematic analysis identified promotional factors, such as within-organisation dynamics and compatibility and barriers at the individual and organisational levels, which were associated with participants’ behaviours after DET sessions.
Conclusion: The implications of these findings are discussed in connection with the strategic implementation of DET to promote disability-inclusive development. Future studies should examine the effectiveness of a strategy by considering the factors identified in this study and by using a reliable sample in various settings where DET sessions are conducted.
HI Pakistan has recently completed a UN Women funded project ”Empowering women with disabilities (EWwD)” focusing on the social and economic empowerment of the women with disabilities. The project was implemented at Islamabad capital territory (ICT), Peshawar, Nowshera and Karachi. This project has directly benefited more than 600 women with disabilities , whereas about 30 DPOs and a number of public private departments / institutions have also been engaged and benefitted.
HI Pakistan collected the stories of project beneficiaries and published to highlight the impact of the project and to integrate the lesson learnt in program cycle management.
This paper provides an overview of progress towards the creation of accurate and comparable disability statistics, the critical issues that impact on the measurement of disability, and discusses one of the most prominent international efforts to improve data on disabilities – the Washington Group on Disability Statistics.
Background: The manner in which disability is understood influences how individuals within a society, its institutions, policies and structures are able to accommodate and support people with disabilities (PWD) (Kaplan 2000). Understanding how students with disabilities (SWD) within a higher education context perceive and experience disability as well as how key players, namely, lecturers and disability unit (DU) staff, who influence that experience, is important in further shaping policy and providing a truly inclusive environment for all within HEIs.
Objectives: The study aimed to examine the narratives of disability among SWD, lecturers and the DU within a tertiary institution, with a view to better understand their experiences and required initiatives to address the challenges of disability within a higher tertiary institution.
Method: The study drew on three theoretical frameworks: social constructionism, feminist disability theory and the Foucauldian perspective. Data for the study were collected through in-depth semi-structured interviews with 12 SWD, seven members of staff from the institution’s DU and five lecturers from within the School of Applied Human Sciences. Data were analysed using thematic analysis.
Results: The findings suggested that in spite of both facilitating and positive representations of disability, the dominant representation of disability was perceived as challenging and as a result, disempowering. Students with disabilities were found to adapt, and consequently modify their behaviour by disassociating from their disability in order to fit in.
Conclusion: The study highlights the need for creating spaces and engagement within an HEI context that both challenge negative discourses of disability, and at the same time, promote positive representations of disability.
African Journal of Disability, Vol 9, 2020
This article aims to reorient thinking about the relationship between the long-standing social model of disability and the rapidly emerging human rights model. In particular, it contests the influential view that the latter develops and improves upon the former (the improvement thesis) and argues instead that the two models are complementary (the complementarity thesis). The article begins with a discursive analysis of relevant documents to investigate how each of the two models has been used in the crafting and monitoring of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. This highlights the increasing importance of the human rights model in this policy context. It also provides examples of the operation of the two models which inform the remainder of the discussion. We then critique the comparisons between the models which underpin the improvement thesis; and, drawing on Foucault’s technologies of power and Beckett and Campbell’s ‘oppositional device’ methodology, deepen and develop this comparative analysis. The result, we argue, is that the two models have different subjects and different functions. In the human rights context, their roles are complementary and supportive.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, schools around the world experience extraordinary times and as education moves online, those who have historically faced marginalisation find themselves facing new challenges to access education. The situation is disproportionately affecting those within marginalised communities in India and across the globe. In education, these disadvantages are amplified for learners with disabilities belonging to low socio-economic backgrounds. Lessons to be learned from schools that are incorporating the principles of inclusion and social justice while approaching these challenges are highlighted.
Purpose: Translating the Neck Disability Index (NDI) into the Malay language (NDI-M); evaluation of psychometric properties in patients with neck pain.
Methods: The NDI-M was translated according to established guidelines. In the first visit, 120 participants completed the NDI-M, visual analogue scale (VAS) for pain and demographic details. 98 participants returned to complete similar questionnaires and the Global Rating of Change (GRoC) scale. The NDI-M was evaluated for internal consistency, test-retest reliability, content validity, construct validity and responsiveness.
Results: The NDI-M demonstrated excellent internal consistency (Cronbach’s α = 0.84) and good test-retest reliability (ICC2,1 = 0.79). Content validity was confirmed with no floor or ceiling effects. Construct validity was established revealing three-factor subscales explaining 68% of the total variance. The NDI-M showed a moderate correlation with VAS (Rp = 0.49, p < 0.001). Regarding responsiveness, a moderate correlation between NDI-M change scores and VAS change scores was found (Rp = 0.40, p < 0.001). However, there was no significant correlation between NDI-M with GRoC (Rs = 0.11, p = 0.27).
Conclusions: The NDI-M is a reliable and valid tool to measure functional outcomes in patients with neck pain. It is responsive in detecting changes in pain intensity during a patient’s rehabilitation journey.
This Working Paper provides an overview of disability as a concept and relevant global treaties and statistics, including evidence of trends and complexities in promoting disability inclusive employment broadly and with some focus on formal employment specifically. We describe the current situation in each of the four focus countries, demonstrating the similarities and differences between them. We then discuss some promising interventions that have been tried, usually on a small scale, in diverse settings, and which may be applicable in our four focus countries (Bangladesh, Kenya, Nigeria, and Uganda). Finally, we present the potential interventions that will be trialled in the Inclusion Works programme, using an innovation-driven, adaptive management approach.
The Inclusion Works programme (2018–2022), funded by the UK Department for International Development, aims to improve employment rates for people with disabilities in Bangladesh, Kenya, Nigeria, and Uganda.
The opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the UK government or members of the Inclusion Works consortium.
Background: Despite its acceptability, the term disability has not been able to shirk the sense of incompleteness, lack, deprivation and incapacitation embodied in the prefix ‘dis-’. The current wave of anti-discrimination on disability issues, calls for constant re-examination of the language and the appellations we use in respect of people with disabilities.
Objectives: The aim of this study is to subject the term disability to some relevancy litmus test with a view to prevent it from acquiring Lyotard’s ‘grand narrative’ and to propose and argue for the term ‘differently abled’ because of its transformative and anti-discriminatory slant.
Method: The study took the form of a literature review using the optic of Derrida’s hierarchy of binaries and the Sesotho proverb, ‘Bitso-lebe-ke seromo’, (A bad name is ominous) to explore the connotations of the term disability as a disenfranchising social construct.
Results: Read through the lens of Derrida’s idea of difference, disability as a concept has no inherent meaning and its meaning derives from its being differentiated from other concepts. Viewed through the lens of Bitso-lebe-ke seromo and read in the context of its deep symbolical significance, the term disability holds immense spiritual power.
Conclusion: The study concludes that the term disability or disabled is exclusionary, stigmatizing, and anti-transformational. As such it embodies imperfection, incapacitation and inferiority. Not only is it ominous, it places upon people with disability the perpetual mark of unattractiveness. Against this background the term differently abled seems to convey more empowering overtones than the term disability.
African Journal of Disability, Vol 9, 2020
Purpose: This study’s purpose was to explore how people on sick leave manage societal norms and values related to work, and how these influence their perspectives of themselves throughout the rehabilitation process.
Materials and methods: This was a longitudinal interview study with a narrative approach, comprising 38 interviews with 11 individuals on long-term sick leave. Data collection was conducted in two phases and analysed iteratively through content analysis.
Results: The results suggest that work ethics and societal norms influence individuals’ views of themselves and the sick leave and rehabilitation process. Conforming one’s personal values to the work norm can create internal conflicts and cause feelings of shame for not being able to live up to the established norm. The strong work norm may create unrealistic expectations, which in some cases may result in constraining the return to work process.
Conclusion: To transform a sick leave narrative into a positive one, societal norms and their influence on identity needs to be recognised. Stakeholders involved in the process can contribute to a positive transformation by not only supporting return to work, but also to acknowledge and help people manage their self-image as having a disability that limits their ability to work.
Inclusive education is a concept born in the global North. Research has shown that its relatively recent but widespread adoption by countries in the global South is often done without consideration of the actual needs of these contexts, and by solely focusing on strategies for learners with disabilities. As a result, inclusive education has been criticised as a neo-colonial project in need of renovation. The aim of this article is to show how research can broaden the understanding of inclusive education and make it more relevant to southern contexts. Drawing on an ethnographic research on inclusive education in Colombia, I present some unique examples of vulnerability, but also experiences of belonging in the direst of circumstances. I conclude that in order to decolonise the concept of inclusive education and make its practice sustainable in southern contexts, we need more culturally sensitive research to inform our understanding of these under-researched spaces.
Disability & the Global South (DGS), 2020, Vol. 7 No. 1
A new era focused on the inclusion of disabled people in society has emerged in recent years around the world. The emergence of this particular discourse of inclusion can be traced to the 1980s, when disabled people worldwide gathered in Singapore to form Disabled Peoples’ International (DPI) and adopted a language of the social model of disability to challenge their exclusion in society. This paper examines the responses of disabled people in Singapore in the decade in and around the formation of DPI. As the social model and disability rights took hold in Singapore, disabled people in Singapore began to advocate for their equal participation in society. In mapping some of the contestations in the 1980s, I expose the logics prevailing in society and how disabled people in Singapore argued for their inclusion in society as well as its implications for our understanding of inclusion in Singapore today.
Disability & the Global South (DGS), 2020, Vol. 7 No. 1
This paper addresses the epistemological dissonance created by the growing movement to impose universal templates of disability and disability-related practices to countries in the Global South and the subsequent erasure of indigenous understandings of disability. Underlying this dissonance, we argue, are the deeply problematic beliefs in universal notions of disability and global development that are anchored to colonial frameworks of understanding and approaching human differences. We explore the presence of these colonial frameworks in three specific areas: the language of disability; understandings of personhood; and notions of inclusivity. We propose that bringing about transformation in these areas would mean using alternative indigenous strengthsbased frameworks of thinking and practices that uncover and value local epistemologies, understanding the complexities of local cultural, historical, and material contexts, and resisting colonial modes of thinking that label these practices as backward.
Disability & the Global South (DGS), 2020, Vol. 7 No. 1
In this paper, we present a collection of decolonizing inclusive practices for elementary education that we have found effective when implementing them in postcolonial countries. The choice and implementation of such practices was informed by the intersectional and interdisciplinary theoretical framework of Critical Disability Studies (CDS) and Disability Critical Race Theory in Education (DisCrit), and guided by decolonizing methodologies and community-based participatory research (CBPR). The main purpose of this paper is to show how critical theoretical frameworks can be made accessible to practitioners through strategies that can foster a critical perspective of inclusive education in postcolonial countries. By doing so, we attempt to push back against the uncritical transfer of inclusion models into Southern countries, which further puts pressure on practitioners to imitate the Northern values of access, acceptance, participation, and academic achievement (Werning et al., 2016). Finally, we hope to start an international dialogue with practitioners, families, researchers, and communities committed to inclusive education in postcolonial countries to critically analyze the application of the strategies illustrated here, and to continue decolonizing contemporary notions of inclusive education.
Disability & the Global South (DGS), 2020, Vol. 7 No. 1
This study examined the attributes of sexual violence against girls and young women with disabilities in the northern part of Ethiopia. In order to reach the proposed objective, six in-depth interviews were conducted with young women with disabilities who were survivors of sexual violence experienced during their adolescence and their caregivers. The study focused on vulnerability factors, situations of perpetrators, effects of sexual abuse and coping strategies.
Journal of Global Ethics, 15:3, 325-343
This study explored how participation constitutes and is constituted by practices of power in group homes for people with intellectual disability. The study used disciplinary power as theoretical perspective and was based on 50 h of observation in two group homes with a total of 15 residents. The analysis identifies practices of power and their relationship to individual agency and participation. The results show that institutional structures construct practices of power that define codes of conduct for the group home residents and their possibility for participation. This study offers implications for the daily lives of residents in group homes for people with intellectual disability.
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