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The Disability Studies minor provides an interdisciplinary learning experience about key disability issues including accessibility, design, inclusion, assistive technologies, political and social history, cultural diversity, civil rights, social justice, and bio-ethics, while also attuning them to varied ways of thinking, communicating, and moving through the world.
There is currently no Graduate Certificate for Disability Studies; however, we hope to activate this certificate in the near future. Please participate in a short survey if you would be interested in taking the certificate. There is, however, a graduate section of one of the two required courses for the disability studies undergraduate minor. Interested graduate students may enroll in GNDR 6880/DISAB 6880 Bad Bodies: Gender and Disability when offered.
Curious about Disability Studies?
If you’d like to see what our Disability courses are like, you should take our introductory course.
What is disability, and how did we come to know and feel what we think we know and feel about this realm of knowledge and lived experience? US cultural ideals of beauty, youth, fitness, strength, sex appeal, social skill, mental acuity, and “health” all rely on norms of ablebodiedness, heterosexuality, and whiteness. We will thus approach disability not as fixed or singular category, but as a fluid, historically shifting, culturally-specific formation that intersects with race, class, gender, language, and nation. How do some bodies, minds, and psyches come to be seen as deviant and others as normal? What are the national and transnational conditions and relationships of power that form the context for these processes? Which cultural institutions have historically disciplined disabled subjects? What legacies of resistance might we find in various forms of art and cultural production; in movements for social justice; and in feminist disability studies scholarship? Where can we look for models of kinship and community structures based on practices of interdependence rather than individual rights? We will approach these questions through a range of critical essays, books, films, artwork, and community engagement. This course includes a community engaged learning project that will support reflection and integration of key concepts in feminist disability studies. Together we will work together to crip—or disturb—contemporary epistemologies of disability.