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Volume 13, Issue 1 of the RDS Journal is now available!

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Volume 13, Issue 1 | Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal

The latest issue of the Review of Disability Studies is out! Dive into this issues’ advancement of ideas from authors representing Australia, Canada, Czech Republic, Hawaii, India, Norway, Sweden, and the United States.




Disabled Lives Matter

Megan A. Conway, Ph.D., RDS Associate Editor

Hawaii, USA

Forty years after activists with disabilities occupied the Federal Building in San Francisco for 28 days to protest lack of implementation of civil rights legislation embedded in the Rehabilitation Act, and twenty-five years after the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, we are still not widely recognized as a distinct minority group who experience discrimination and wrongful treatment similar, and often worse, to that experienced by other minority groups…

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Research Articles and Essays

Exploring Disability Policy in Africa: An Online Search for National Disability Policies and UNCRPD Ratification

Erika Luisa Fernandez, Lauren Rutka, & Heather Aldersey, Queen's University


This research brief presents a search for national policies on disability and UN CRPD ratification in African countries.  The results of the search found that over half of the countries in continental Africa have a current disability policy and that the majority of countries have ratified the UN CRPD.  Many of the countries that have neither ratified the UN CRPD nor implemented national policies on disabilities are characterized by conflict and/or weak or absent governments…

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Personal Autonomy and Disability

Lenka Krhutová, University of Ostrava

Czech Republic

This paper presents different approaches to the concept of personal autonomy in the disability context. It draws attention to the ways the requirements for “competent” bodies and autonomy of the “incarnate” subject affect the usual way of understanding the autonomy of people with disabilities…

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Photovoice: Life Through the Eyes of People with Disability in North India

Nathan Grills, PhD, and Gillian Porter, PhD, Nossal Institute for Global Health and The University of Melbourne; Raj Kumar, Landour Community Hospital and Emmanuel Hospital Association; & Jubin Varghese, Herbertpur Christian Hospital

Australia & India

The authors used photovoice methodology to gain insight into the lives of 18 people with disabilities in rural North India. This project provided participants with an opportunity to express their joys and difficulties and provided important insights to help structure future programs and supports within the community…

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Swedish Citizens with Cerebral Palsy or Spina Bifida – Perceived Experiences of Social Life and Employment

Karin Törnbom, Marie Törnbom, & Stibrant Sunnerhagen, Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology University of Gothenburg

Norway and Sweden

This article offers insight into the ways in which people with cerebral palsy and spina bifida reflect upon their experiences of participation in relation to social life and employment. The qualitative method was used to explore experiences of participation among adults with CP or SB, using semi structured interviews. Participants expressed a desire to make a contribution to the labor market, to have sustainable relationships and to be accepted by others.…

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Creative Works

Photovoice: Life Through the Eyes of People with Disability in North India

Kai Rands


The drawing prompts the viewer’s contemplation of lenses on three different levels. (By lens, I mean a device that transforms the user's experience in some way and designates a focus.) First, disability studies serves as a lens. Simi Linton (1998) has noted that disability studies is “a prism through which one can gain a broader understanding of society and human experience”…

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Best Practices

Disability Studies 2018 Summer Online Courses

JoDell R. Heroux, PhD, Central Michigan University


Special education has historically been understood as a service provided to students with disabilities who are perceived to be too impaired to successfully progress in the general education curriculum and classroom. This perception has been reinforced through teacher preparation programs that rely heavily on the medical model of disability to prepare both special and general education teachers. While there is an increased push both legislatively and socially for more inclusive practices in education, this over-reliance on the medical model does little to nurture inclusive attitudes and worse, perpetuates deficit assumptions of disability. This paper seeks to explore how the infusion of Disability Studies into the teacher preparation curriculum might be used to foster more inclusive attitudes…

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Dissertations and Abstracts

Dissertation and Abstracts v13i1

Jonathan Erlen, PhD, and Megan Conway, PhD

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Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal

Since 2003, the Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal (RDS) has published over 500 authors from all over the world. As one of only a handful of peer-reviewed Disability Studies journals, RDS Journal is a quarterly online journal that provides an international forum for people with disabilities, academics, professionals, artists and creators from all backgrounds and expertise to express ideas relevant to disability studies and people with disabilities.