Cover image for Disability
Barnes, Colin, 1946-
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Publication Information:
Cambridge, UK : Polity Press ; Malden, MA : Blackwell Publishers, [2003]

Physical Description:
vi, 186 pages ; 22 cm.
Disability: a choice of models -- Disabling societies: domination and oppression -- Social oppression: patterns and social divisions -- Impairment, disability and the body -- Culture, media and representation -- The politics of disability: breaking down the barriers? -- Disability and development: global perspectives.
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HV1568 .B34 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

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For most of the twentieth century, people with disabilities havebeen regarded as 'victims' of their condition and a 'burden' onsociety. More recently, however, disabled people and theirorganizations across Europe and North America have challengedconventional explanations for their individual and collectivedisadvantage, calling for policy measures to change the image andstatus of disabled people in the Western world.

In this new book, Barnes and Mercer provide a concise andaccessible introduction to the concept of disability. Drawing on aburgeoning 'disability studies' literature from around the world,and from a range of disciplinary perspectives, the authors explorethe evolution of this concept and offer a wide-ranging critique ofestablished academic, policy and professional orthodoxies. The bookhighlights disabled peoples' exclusion and marginalization in keyareas of social activity and participation across differenthistorical and cultural contexts, such as family life andreproduction, education, employment, leisure, cultural imagery andpolitics.

The analysis concentrates on disability as a distinctive form ofsocial oppression similar to that experienced by women, minorityethnic and 'racial' groups, and lesbians and gay men. Key issuesaddressed include: theorizing disability; historical andcomparative perspectives; experiencing impairment and disability;professional and policy intervention in the lives of disabledpeople; disability politics, social policy and citizenship; anddisability culture.

This will be essential reading for those studying sociology, socialpolicy, social work, health studies, disability studies, and thosein the therapy and nursing professions.

Author Notes

Colin Barnes is Professor of Disability Studies, Department of Sociology and Social Policy at the University of Leeds.

Table of Contents

1 Rethinking Disability
2 Theorising Disability
3 Patterns of Social Exclusion
4 Bringing Impairment Back In?
5 Culture Media and Representation
6 The Politics of Disability
7 Disabling Futures: Theory and Research