Branding and Designing Disability
Reconceptualising Disability Studies
Routledge – 2014 – 302 pages
Over the past fifty years, design and branding have become omnipotent in the market and have made their way to other domains as well. Given their potential to divide humans into categories and label their worth and value, design and branding can wield immense but currently unharnessed powers of social change. Groups designed as devalued can be undesigned, redesigned and rebranded to seamlessly and equivalently participate in community, work and civic life. This innovative book argues that disability as a concept and category is created, reified, and segregated through current design and branding that begs for creative change.
Transcending models of disability that locate it either as an embodied medical condition or as a socially constructed entity, this book challenges the very existence and usefulness of the category itself. Proposing and illustrating creative and responsible design, DePoy and Gilson include thinking and action strategies that are useful and potent for "undesigning", redesigning, and rebranding to meet the full range of human needs and to enhance full participation in local through global communities. Divided into two parts, the first section presents a critical examination of disability as a designed and branded phenomenon, exploring what exactly is being designed and branded and how. The second part investigates the redesign of disability and provides principles for redesign and rebranding illustrated with examples from high-tech to place-based sustainable strategies.
The book provides a unique and contemporary framework for thinking about disability as well as providing relevant design and branding guidance to designers and engineers interested in embodiment issues.
'This book completely rethinks the idea of disability in new and innovative ways by starting with the concept of disability as design. The authors ask us not how to critique "normal" but how we could redesign it. A groundbreaking analysis that makes it impossible to think about disability as we have in the past.' - Lennard J. Davis, University of Illinois, USA
Part 1: Scope and Craft The Scope 1. Branding, Designing and Marketing Humanity 2. History of Designing and Branding the Category of Disability 3. Conceptual Design: Designing and Branding Disability as Abnormal 4. Axiological Design: Designing and Branding Value or Devalue 5. Designing Individual and Collective Identity 6. Market Segment: Designing and Branding the Disability Park 7. Policy Design: Designing Disability Rights and Resources-Local through Global 8. Designing Disability: Beyond the Limits of Humanness The Craft 9. Designing and Branding Disability Through Concept and Image 10. Designing and Branding Disability Through Policy and Services 11. Designing Disability Through Structures and Products Part 2: Undesigning and Redesigning 12. Using Design and Branding to Dismantle the Park 13. Redesigning and Rebranding through Innovative Knowledge and Skill, Visuals, Conceptuals, and "Concretuals" 14. Knowledge and Skills for Creating Profound Change
Elizabeth DePoy is Professor of Interdisciplinary Disability Studies at the University of Maine, USA.
Stephen Gilson is Professor of Interdisciplinary Disability Studies at the University of Maine, USA.