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Disability Studies: Home

This website will help you find the best library databases, search tools, and reference sources for Disability Studies.

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What Is Disability Studies?

Critical Disability Studies is an interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary field that approaches disability as a social and cultural category, a lived experience, and an analytical frame. It thus expands understandings of disability and people with disabilities across diverse geographical and temporal contexts. According to the Encyclopedia of American Disability History, "disability is not a characteristic that exists in the person so defined, but a construct that finds its meaning in a social and cultural context.” Critical Disability Studies explores issues of identity, representation, access, citizenship, technology, knowledge, and power—among other topics—and understands disability as inextricably tied to other social forces and identities, including gender, sexuality, class, and race.

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Some of this guide was developed by Stacy Reardon for the Middlebury College Library and is reproduced here with their permission. Thank you to Susan Burch at Middlebury College for guidance and suggestions.