Book Launch (London): Youth and Disability: A Challenge to Mr Reasonable, Jenny Slater, 7th December, LSBU

When? Monday 7th December, 1-3

Where? Department of Education, London South Bank University, Room V203, K2 Building, 103 Borough Road, SE1 OAA

Free to attend and everybody welcome, but please  email martinn4@lsbu.ac.uk if you are coming from outside LSBU

You are warmly invited to join us for the ‘London Book Launch’ of Jenny Slater’s book, Youth and Disability: A Challenge to My Reasonable, published by Ashgate in February this year.

Jenny will present a paper based upon one chapter of the book, Young Disabled People, Gender and Sexuality. There will be a time for questions and conversation, and half price vouchers for the book available.

Information about Youth and Disability: A Challenge to Mr Reasonable by Jenny Slater. Published by Ashgate as part of their Interdisciplinary Disability Studies series (series editor: Mark Sherry).

In this ground-breaking book, Jenny Slater uses the lens of ‘the reasonable’ to explore how normative understandings of youth, dis/ability and the intersecting identities of gender and sexuality impact upon the lives of young dis/abled people. Although youth and disability have separately been thought within socio-cultural frameworks, rarely have sociological studies of ‘youth’ and ‘disability’ been brought together. By taking an interdisciplinary, critical disability studies approach to explore the socio-cultural concepts of ‘youth’ and ‘disability’ alongside one-another, Slater convincingly demonstrates that ‘youth’ and ‘disability’ have been conceptualised within medical/psychological frameworks for too long.

With chapters focusing on access and youth culture, independence, autonomy and disabled people’s movements, and the body, gender and sexuality, this volume’s intersectional and transdisciplinary engagement with social theory offers a significant contribution to existing theoretical and empirical literature and knowledges around disability and youth. Indeed, through highlighting the ableism of adulthood and the falsity of conceptualising youth as a time of becoming-independent-adult, the need to shift approaches to research around dis/abled youth is one of the main themes of the book. This book therefore is a provocation to rethink what is implicit about ‘youth’ and ‘disability’. Moreover, through such an endeavour, this book sits as a challenge to Mr Reasonable.

Contents: Introduction: theoretical perspectives; Disabled people in (neo)liberal times (or, disability as unreasonable); Youth as border zone, disability and disposability (or, challenging youth as becoming-reasonable adult); The making of un/reasonable bodies at the border zone of youth; From adulthood independence to continuing relational autonomy; Negotiating space and constituting ‘problems’: access at the border zone of youth; Dis/abled youth, bodies, femininity and sexuality: having difficult conversations; The limits of ‘sameness’: goodbye Mr Reasonable; References; Index.

About the Author: Jenny Slater is Lecturer in Education and Disability Studies at Sheffield Hallam University, UK.

Reviews: ‘With this book Slater announces herself as a rising star of critical disability studies. This impassioned, politicised and engaged text alerts us to the possibilities that emerge for reimagining the human at the intersections of dis/ability and youth. Written with verve, humour and accountability, Slater illustrates that critical scholarship can be both theoretical and biographical in equal measure. A wonderful book.’
Dan Goodley, University of Sheffield, UK

‘Jenny Slater goes straight to the “heart of the matter” to interrogate the “unreasonability” of “reasonable” neo-liberal discourses that enact violence against disabled youth. Slater writes lucidly linking theory with first person accounts by disabled youth and with her own insightful reflections to foreground ableism masquerading as a “reasonable” discourse at the intersections of race, class, gender identity, and sexuality.’
Nirmala Erevelles, The University of Alabama, USA


CFP: Disability and Shakespearean Theatre Symposium

Where?: Sir Alwyn Williams Building, Lilybank Gardens, University of Glasgow, G12 8QQ

When?: 9.45am-5pm, Wednesday 20th April 2016

Attendance fee?: £25 full, £15 concession, free for BSA members

What?:  This symposium draws together growing research interest in disability studies and Shakespearean theatre. In discussing the depiction, treatment, and uses of disability in Shakespeare’s work (and that of his contemporaries) alongside analysis of the role of disability in staging of his plays, we hope to encourage interaction between creative practitioners, historians, and literary scholars. Playwright and disability studies scholar Prof. Chris Mounsey (University of Winchester) will give the keynote address on “VariAbility in Shakespeare”, in which he will explore alternative ways of responding to the question of the existence of disability in the Early Modern period, and to one of Shakespeare’s most infamous characters: Richard III. Following the symposium, Glasgow-based playwright Molly Ziegler (Notes, Getting it (Back)) has agreed to premier her new play, Let Her Come In. Let Her Come In is a one act rewriting of Hamlet, focused on mental illness, gender, and disability.

We are now looking for academics, actors, and creative practitioners of all levels, periods, and fields to submit proposals for 20 minute conference papers, or 5-10 minute position papers for discussion. We invite papers on topics that include (but are not limited to):

  • Disability in contemporary adaptations of Shakespeare
  • 21st-century understanding of (and challenges to) disability on the Shakespearean stage
  • VariAbility and categorisations of disability on stage (especially as applied to mental and physical disabilities)
  • Staging disability (actors, prostheses, costumes, etc.)
  • Disabled actors and staging Shakespeare
  • Signed Shakespeare, captioning, and assistive technologies
  • Disabled scholars’ experience of Shakespeare in performance and the academy
  • Cultural and historical concepts of disability in Shakespearean texts
  • The language of disability in Shakespeare
  • Challenging the idea of Shakespeare as savant
  • Disability and Shakespeare’s collaborators and contemporaries
  • Disability studies theory and Shakespearean theatre

Further Details?: Please email an abstract of up to 300 words and a short bio to the symposium organisers (disabilityandshakespeare@gmail.com) by Friday 15th January 2016. Please indicate if your proposal is for a position paper. There are two small travel bursaries available for postgraduate/early career presenters; the recipients of these grants will be asked to write a short reflection on the symposium, which will be published on the BSA website, the Glasgow Medical Humanities Research Centre blog, and the symposium website.

If you wish to be considered for one of the postgraduate bursaries, please email us for an application form and submit it with your abstract and bio. We will contact all respondents on the outcome of their proposal by Friday 22nd January 2016. Thanks to funding from the British Shakespeare Association, this symposium will be free to attend for BSA members. Symposium attendees are welcome to join the BSA in advance of the event or on the day.

The symposium venue, the Sir Alwyn Williams Building, is fully accessible, and the symposium will include accommodations such as pre-circulated papers and discussion topics, ending with an interactive roundtable discussion. For more information on access, transport, and the venue please visit our website. If you have any questions, please email the symposium team at disabilityandshakespeare@gmail.com, or contact us via @Disability&SS.


Seminar: Disability and the Equality Act 2010: Removing Barriers to Equality and Human Rights Implementation?

Caroline Gooding Memorial Seminar

Friday 4 December 2015 | 14:00-17:00
Moot Court Room, School of Law,
University Of Leeds

This is a free event but registration in advance is required

Twenty years after the enactment of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995, it is becoming clear that legal aid and other reforms in England and Wales are having a significant impact on the enforcement of disability equality rights (now contained in the Equality Act 2010).
This half-day event focuses on the nature and extent of this impact and provides a space for reflection about how disability equality law might be harnessed to contribute to driving the social change for which it was introduced. It brings together activists, lawyers, politicians, researchers and others at the cutting edge of these debates to exchange experiences, perspectives and ideas. Please do join us!

Speakers include:
• Debbie Abrahams (Shadow Minister for Disabled People and MP for Oldham East and Saddleworth)
• Colin Low (House of Lords and Low Commission)
• Catherine Casserley (Cloisters Chambers and Adviser to the House of Lords Committee on the Equality Act 2010)
• Rhian Davies (Director of Disability Wales)
• Catherine Rayner (7BR Chambers and Chair of the Discrimination Law Association)
• Debbie Jolly (Co-founder of Disabled People against Cuts, and a director of European Network on Independent Living)

The event is in memory of Caroline Gooding, a key architect, campaigner, and implementer of our disability equality law

This event is part of the Human Rights in Collaboration series of events.
It is jointly hosted by the Centre for Disability Studies and the Centre for Law and Social Justice, University of Leeds.

Moot Court Room,
School of Law,
Liberty Building,
University of Leeds,
Leeds, LS6 1AN. UK

Registration Details:

BSL interpretation, lip-speaker and palantypist support will be available.

•There is limited car-parking available on campus on a first come, first serve basis. (http://www.meetinleeds.co.uk/getting-to-the-university-of-leeds)
•Parking spaces are available on campus for blue badge holders. Please contact 0113 343 5491 or carparking@leeds.ac.uk for further details.

Anna Lawson
School of Law
Room G.14, The Liberty Building
University of Leeds

Direct line: 0113 3435054