This textbook brings together a wide range of expert voices from the field of disability studies and the disabled people's movement to tackle the essential topics relevant to this area of study. From the outset disability is discussed from a social model perspective, demonstrating how future practice and discourse could break down barriers and lead to more equal relationships for disabled people in everyday life.

An interdisciplinary and broad-ranging text, the book includes 50 chapters on topics relevant across health and social care. Reflective questions and suggestions for further reading throughout will help readers gain a critical appreciation of the subject and expand their knowledge.

This will be valuable reading for students and professionals across disability studies, health, nursing, social work, social care, social policy and sociology.

The Medical Model

The Medical Model

The medical model

In the sense that the word is used here, a model is a framework of ideas used to make sense of phenomena and experience in the social worlds we inhabit. A model represents a particular way of ordering and structuring knowledge and, indeed, shapes what can be known. There is little about how we come to understand either ourselves or anybody else around us that is not determined by the way we are individually situated within a complex network of institutional patterns and arrangements. These structure our perceptions of, for example, gender, race, age, class, impairment and disability (Burr 2003), each reflecting certain assumptions embedded within explanatory and predictive models. What we know is learned and what we learn is moulded ...

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