Newly published conference report from last year’s Theorsing Normlacy to get you in the mood for

Anticipation is building and abstracts are coming in for Theorizing Normalcy and the Mundane 4th International Conference. All abstracts should be submitted by 22nd April, all details here.

To wet your appetite, here’s a taster from Cassie Ogden’s newly published review of last year’s conference:

“The philosophy of the conference was summed up beautifully this year by Dan Goodley: “If you think achieving ‘normality’ is either desirable or possible, then perhaps you are in the wrong place.”

“Disrupting notions of what should be and what is remained a theme throughout a myriad of papers over the course of the conference, through a variety of different contexts including politics, bodies, disability, sexuality, and culture.”

“Normalcy 2012 drew to a close, with the idea that disability is already “queer” as it troubles people’s perceptions of self and independence, which is necessary to allow an adequate challenge to neo-liberal ideas of autonomy. After two days of “cripping” the norm, the realization of the possibilities for human becomings were evident. We had sat, theorized, and turned normalcy inside out and back to front. The notion of “cripping” was no longer deemed contentious, no more or less shocking, but an example of anomalous existence that holds transformative possibilities that may benefit us all.”

Click here to read more.

Events and Conferences

CFP: Children’s relationships, embodied social capital and disability: connecting scales of inclusion and exclusion.

Loughborough University, Loughborough, LE11 3TU, UK.

10.00am – 5.00pm, 9th July 2013

Keynote speaker:  Professor Gill Valentine

Panel members include: Professor Deborah Youdell, Professor Janice McLaughlin

This one day conference is an end of project event. The project has explored how children’s social relationships play a part in processes of inclusion and exclusion in contemporary schooling. The research has examined how children’s everyday practices in school, home and leisure spaces creates embodied social capital, (re)producing disability as an identifier that that intersects with other ‘axes of power’ (e.g. class, gender, ethnicity) to reproduce or transform enduring material inequalities.

Findings illuminate issues such as: the significance of relationships to school and social inclusion, hierarchies of accepted identities, structural factors (e.g. transport, support networks, leisure activity provision), interventions made in children’s relationships, the role of special schools, and methodological approaches.

Further information about the project is available at the project website: http://socialcapital.lboro.ac.uk.webhost1.lboro.ac.uk/home/

We would especially like to invite parents, children and young people, policy makers, and researchers of education, children and youth, geography, sociology and disability studies to participate in this event.

The conference will include a keynote speech by Professor Gill Valentine, presentation of project findings, panel discussions, and workshops. Places are limited and will be allocated on a first-come-first served basis.  Please confirm attendance.

Deadline for registration: 8th May. Email lboroconference2013@gmail for enquiries and registration.


Book launch: Autism: A Social and Medical History by Mitzi Waltz (Sheffield Hallam University)

Autism: A Social and Medical History contextualizes autism as a socio cultural phenomenon, and examines the often troubling effects of representations and social trends. Exploring the individuals and events in the history of this condition, Waltz blends research and personal perspectives to examine social narratives of normalcy, disability and difference.

Autism has often been seen as separate from other forms of impairment and negative attitudes towards people with autism and, in the past, their parents, have been prevalent. This book explores key research in the field as well as insight from parents and people with autism, the latter of whom have often had no voice in what is written about the history of autism.

This book will appeal to researchers and students in the fields of medical sociology, disability studies, and medical history as well as increasing public debates on autism.

Dr Mitzi Waltz will give a lecture on the topic: “The history of autism, and what we can learn from it”

Location: Owen 942, Howard St, Sheffield, South Yorkshire S1 1WB. For a map of City Campus click here.

Date: Tuesday 16th April

Time: 6.00pm-9.00pm

Open to all, no charge. If attending please email s.waller@shu.ac.uk



Reminder: next DRF Monday 15th April, with Harriet Cooper and Nick Hodge

Details of the next DRF to be held on next Monday 15th April 2013 11am-1pm in Arundel 10111

Slot 1: Harriet Cooper (Birkbeck College, University of London) No Time to Lose:Childhood Time following the Diagnosis of an Impairment in Babyhood

How does the diagnosis of an impairment in babyhood affect the baby’s experience of time? When a doctor delivers a prognosis which maps out a particular kind of future for the baby, how does this pronouncement interrupt the flow of childhood time? How does the time of the present, and that of the future, feel for the child in question? This paper will explore these questions by reflecting on my own (mediated) experience of the diagnosis of my physical impairment at the age of eleven months.

If the ‘normal’ child represents futurity, as Lee Edelman has suggested in his critique of the hegemony of “reproductive futurism” (2004: 2), what is the place of the disabled child, who “might not even have a future at all” (Mollow 2012: 288)? Mollow suggests that the disabled child is in fact brought inside the dominant order via the ideology of “‘rehabilitative futurism’” (2012: 288), which contains within it the ableist fantasy that, through rehabilitation, the disabled child can become ‘normal’.

What does it feel like to be the subject of “rehabilitative futurism” before one has words to describe this subjection? This paper offers some personal reflections on how the medical practices of diagnosis and rehabilitation alter the pre-verbal child’s experience of present and future time.

Slot 2: Nick Hodge (Sheffield Hallam University) A Social Model of Behaviour

This paper will evaluate how different models of disability might inform understandings of how people respond to the behaviours of others. It will critique some of the current conceptions of challenging behaviour and suggest how these might be reframed to lead to more respectful and enabling practices within a rights led agenda.

Venue: The seminar will be held in the Arundel Building, 122 Charles Street, City Campus, Sheffield Hallam University, S1 1WB.  For a map of City Campus click here.

If you, or anybody you know, would like to present at a DRF seminar please do get in touch.  Alternatively, let us know if there is an issue/article/book you’d like to facilitate a round table discussion on.

Even if you do not intend to present, feel free to come along, listen and share your thoughts.   For lunchtime slots, please feel free to bring your own food and drink.

We aim to be accessible and have produced some guidelines of which we would like presenters to be mindful – these can be accessed here: Accessible Presenting

To offer to present, facilitate a discussion or for more detailed access information please contact: Rebecca Mallett: r.mallett@shu.ac.uk or 0114 225 4669 or Jenny Slater: j.slater@shu.ac.uk or 0114 225 6691.