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.

Explanations Introduced

Explanations introduced

In this chapter, we focus our attention on explanations for description that have been important in defining disability and responses to it both historically and contemporarily. As the second element of Explanatory Legitimacy Theory, the explanatory dimension provides the rationale for human description. It is this dimension, not description, on which value judgments regarding legitimacy, both of belonging in the disability category and of responses to those who are members, are made.

Multiple and often competing explanations for what people do, how they look, and what they experience have been posited in contemporary Disability Studies literature. In Chapter 3 on contemporary history, we introduced two overarching and competing explanatory genres: medical-diagnostic and constructed. In this chapter, we reknot and cast an even more ...

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