Disability Rights and Wrongs
Routledge – 2007 – 240 pages
Over the last thirty years, the field of disability studies has emerged from the political activism of disabled people. In this challenging review of the field, leading disability academic and activist Tom Shakespeare argues that the social model theory has reached a dead end.
Drawing on a critical realist perspective, Shakespeare promotes a pluralist, engaged and nuanced approach to disability. Key topics discussed include:
This stimulating and accessible book challenges orthodoxies in British disability studies, promoting a new conceptualization of disability and fresh research agenda. It is an invaluable resource for researchers and students in disability studies and sociology, as well as professionals, policy makers and activists.
'Tom Shakespeare has produced a work of mature scholarship that advances our thinking about the fundamental issues in Disability Studies. The clarity and balance of his argument challenges others to raise the level of discourse in the field. Disability Rights and Wrongs is a must read.' - Gary L. Albrecht, University of Illinois at Chicago, USA
'In his characteristically polemical and thought-provoking style, Tom Shakespeare presents a call to arms against the British social model of disability. Love it or loathe it, there is much in this book to stimulate debate in disability studies and the wider social science community. The reader is taken into familiar territory as well as into areas little explored in disability studies to date. Challenges are thrown up at every turn. Do Shakespeare’s arguments hold up? You be the judge.' - Carol Thomas, Institute for Health Research, Lancaster University, UK
'Galileo was roundly condemned for daring to question the orthodoxy of the day, even though he was right. Tom Shakespeare also challenges orthodoxy concerning disability theory and studies. No cow is sacred and as a result this book will be controversial. But his arguments demand consideration and deep thought. If you read only one book on disability rights this year, make this the book.' - Bert Massie, Disability Rights Commission, UK
'This thought-provoking and interesting book challenges conventional views in relation to disability studies…a valuable resource to students of disability studies, practitioners as well as other professionals who work with disabled people.' - Angela Clarke, Therapy Today
1. Introduction Part 1: Conceptualising Disability 2. The Family of Social Approaches 3. Critiquing the Social Model 4. Disability: A Complex Interaction 5. Labels and Badges Part 2: Disability and Bioethics 6. Questioning Prenatal Diagnosis 7. Just Around the Corner: The Quest for Cure 8. Autonomy at the End of Life Part 3: The Social Relations of Disability 9. Care, Support and Assistance 10. Disability Rights and the Future of Charity 11. Love, Friendship and Intimacy 12. The Role of Non-Disabled People in the World of Disability 13. Concluding Thoughts
Tom Shakespeare has taught and researched sociology at the Universities of Cambridge, Sunderland, Leeds and Newcastle. He has written and broadcast extensively about disability and genetics, and his co-authored books include The Sexual Politics of Disability, Exploring Disability and Genetic Politics.