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.



This chapter begins by defining the concept of citizenship. It then shows how contradictions between the perceived rights and responsibilities embedded in the concept of citizenship can contribute to disabled people's exclusion from society. For example, a disabled person may have the right to vote, but may be unable to take full advantage of this if their polling station is inaccessible.

Citizenship has a long history, dating back to the Ancient Greeks (fifth–fourth centuries BC). To them ‘the optimum relationship between the individual and the state was embodied in the notion of the citizen’ (Beckett 2006: 24).

Citizen literally means member of the state (Beckett 2006: 24). In Ancient Greece, there were penalties for those who failed to conform to the expectations arising from their status ...

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