Presenting fully integrative text covering disability from a variety of disciplines

This innovative text first reviews existing theories, then sets forth a new viewpoint that incorporates elements from disability studies, sociology, human services, rehabilitation counseling, and public health. Authors Elizabeth DePoy and Stephen French Gilson explore the history of disability with a focus on both Western and non-Western cultures, examine the historical conceptions of disability and how they have affected the lives and civil rights of the disabled, and explore a wide range of both classic and new and emerging theories. The book concludes with a section on application of theory to practice and policy in the professional and public realm and the recommendation of a socially just community.

Legitimacy—What is It?

Legitimacy—what is it?

In this chapter, we devote our attention to the clarification, exploration, and illustration of the construct of legitimacy. We briefly introduced legitimacy in Chapter 1 as it emerged throughout history and then specifically applied it to disability determination and response.

Similar to other legitimacy theorists, we apply the construct of legitimacy to examine the explanatory criteria that are considered credible and acceptable to confer a status, in this case disability status, and then fashion responses to it. Because legitimacy theories aim to unclothe and display explicit and tacit values, pluralistic ideas, and power relations that determine authenticity, we find legitimacy to be a powerful disambiguating microscope to magnify and clarify why one becomes considered as disabled, the location of disability within ...

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