Disability, Culture, and Society

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This seminar provides a venue for scholars working in disability studies—which examines the social, political, cultural, and historical factors that define disability—to interrogate the current state of the field and identify the most crucial problems and concerns for its future. Critical scholarship around disability questions is essential because it builds a platform to interrogate charged ethical and political questions about the meaning of aesthetics and cultural representation, identity, and dynamics of social inclusion and/or exclusion. Over the past 15 years, disability studies has grown into a vibrant interdisciplinary arena, engaging some of the most pressing debates of our time: questions about the beginning and end of life, prenatal testing, abortion, euthanasia, eugenics; definitions of mental health and wellness; accommodation in schools, public transportation, and the workplace; technologies for the medical correction and “cure” of the non-normative body; disease, wartime injuries, post-traumatic stress, and healthcare.

Professor Julia Miele Rodas

Professor Irina Carlota Silber

Liz Bowen



09/05/2018 CUNY School for Professional Studies, Room 407
5:15 PM
Autistic Disturbances—book launch & signing
Julia Miele Rodas, Bronx Community College, CUNY
Speaker Link

09/26/2018 CUNY School for Professional Studies, Room 407
5:15 PM
Authoring Autism, Book Launch & Signing
Melanie Yergeau, University of Michigan
Speaker Link Abstract

10/12/2018 Barnard Hall, Barnard College
12:00 PM
Disability, Health and Human Development
Sophie Mitra, Fordham University
Speaker Link Abstract

Respondent: Maria Martinho, UN Programme on Disability

11/30/2018 409 Barnard Hall
12:00 PM
Mules and Madmen: Interspecies Debility in Zora Neale Hurston's Speakerly Texts
Liz Bowen, Columbia University
Speaker Link Abstract

Respondent: Todd Carmody, Hamilton College

02/08/2019 Location TBA
12:00 PM
Crip the Met
Rebecca McGinnis and Marie Clapot, The Metropolitan Museum of Art

03/30/2019 Heyman Center for the Humanities’ Second Floor Common Room, Columbia University
9:30 AM
Homunculus Revolts
Zoë Wool, Rice University

Matthew Rebhorn, James Madison University

Respondent: David Hayes, Union College

Notes: Part of a panel on Mind-Body Problems at the Explorations in the Medical Humanities 2019 Workshop