Funded PhD opportunity at MMU in Digital Inclusion (UK)

There is a funded PhD opportunity at Manchester Metropolitan University studying “Digital Inclusion: Transforming the lives of people with learning disabilities”

Summary: The project will explore the ways in which people with learning disabilities are using the internet. People with learning disabilities are commonly digitally excluded but as the numbers of internet users increases, it is important to learn more about their experiences. This research will explore how the internet is being used, the nature of support and identify strategies for successful internet use.

Full details here: http://www2.mmu.ac.uk/research/research-study/scholarships/detail/hpsc-sc-2017-1-digital-inclusion.php

Closing date: 13th April 2017


Request for Research Participants: Accessibility in the Built Environment

Message posted on behalf of Ceri Hedderwick Turner. If interested, please contact Ceri on the email address provided below – thanks.

“My name is Ceri Hedderwick Turner, I am a third year architecture student currently undertaking my dissertation which examines ways in which accessibility can be more effectively/fundamentally integrated into the architectural design process as well as into the education of architects. I am interested in looking at accessibility as not only the functional access to buildings, but additionally at how the whole sensory experience of a building is perceived and at the emotional response architecture can induce.

As part of my dissertation I will be making a short film exploring how people experience buildings differently. I am looking for volunteers, in particular people with different access issues, to interview on their experience with the built environment and potentially be involved with the making of the short film. If you are interested in sharing your experiences with architecture and accessibility please contact me by email: coh23@cam.ac.uk “


Event: Other Psychotherapies – Across Time, Space, and Cultures (April, 2017: Glasgow, UK)

Event: Other Psychotherapies – Across Time, Space, and Cultures

Date: Monday 3rd – Tuesday 4th April 2017

Location: Wolfson Medical Building, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, G12 8LQ (UK)

Keynote Speakers:

  • Dr Claudia Lang, Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology, Ludwig-Maximilians-University Munich: ‘Theory and practice in Ayurvedic psychotherapy’
  • Dr Chiara Thumiger, Classics and Ancient History, University of Warwick: ‘Therapies of the word in ancient medicine’
  • Dr Elizabeth Roxburgh, Psychology, University of Northampton: ‘Anomalous experiences and mental health’
  • Dr Jennifer Lea, Geography, University of Exeter: ‘Building “A Mindful Nation”? The use of mindfulness meditation in educational, health and criminal justice settings’

The Wellcome Trust-funded conference ‘Other Psychotherapies – across time, space, and cultures’ brings contemporary Western expertise into dialogue with psychotherapeutic approaches from ‘other’ spatially, historically or otherwise ‘distant’ cultures. Having confirmed the programme of speakers for the event, we are delighted to announce that general registration is now open.

Registration: Registration costs £40 for general admittance, and £15 for students/service users. Ticket price includes attendance at the conference on 3rd-4th April 2017, including lunch and refreshments on both days, and a buffet dinner on Mon 3rd April.

  • To register, and to see our full programme of speakers, please visit our Eventbrite page.

Please email the organisers at arts-otherpsychs@glasgow.ac.uk if you have any queries.

Organising Committee:

  • Dr Gavin Miller (Chair), Medical Humanities Research Centre/English Literature, University of Glasgow
  • Dr Sofia Xenofontos, Classics, University of Glasgow
  • Dr Cheryl McGeachan, Geographical and Earth Sciences, University of Glasgow
  • Dr Ross White, Psychological Sciences, University of Liverpool
DRF News

Reminder: DRF is back on Monday with a session on ‘Thinking with ‘Chemical Stories’

Just a quick reminder that the dates for 16-17 seminar series schedule is now available, along with details of the first seminar.

Dr. Kirsty Liddiard (University of Sheffield) and Dr. Esther Ignagni (Ryerson University, Toronto) will be sharing their groundbreaking, internationally acclaimed work, “Thinking with ‘Chemical Stories’” on Monday, 28th November 2016, 11am-1pm, Arundel 10311 (Sheffield Hallam University).

More info here.

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


Event: Next steps for transforming caring for people with learning disabilities (Jan. 2017: London, UK)

Event Title: Next Steps For Transforming Caring For People With Learning Disabilities: Funding, Integration and Community Care

Date: Friday, 27th January 2017

Place: Central London

– This event is CPD certified –

With local Transforming Care Partnerships (TCPs) beginning their work, this timely seminar will provide an opportunity to assess future policy priorities for people with learning disabilities across health and social care.

Delegates will consider the implementation of NHS England’s Building the Right Support plan, with local plans proposed by TCPs – collaborations between Clinical Commissioning Groups, local authorities and specialised commissioners – due to be assessed against countrywide objectives, with the aim of, by 2019, reducing the reliance on inpatient care and establishing a national service delivery model for commissioners and providers.

Further sessions focus on the impact of population-based healthcare, via new 
Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs), on care for people with learning disabilities, the impact of new inspection methodologies announced in the CQC’s five-year strategy on the regulation of care, and priorities for personalising care in light of the national rollout of the Integrated Personal Commissioning programme – as well as improving access to primary care for people with learning disabilities.

A service user from CHANGE has agreed to deliver an address at the seminar.

Professor Jane Cummings, Chief Nursing Officer, NHS England has also agreed to deliver an address at this seminar.

Sue Darker, Operations Director, Learning Disabilities and Mental Health, Hertfordshire County Council; Sharon Jeffreys, Head of Commissioning – Learning Disabilities, NHS South West Lincolnshire Clinical Commissioning Group; Dr Theresa Joyce, National Professional Advisor on Learning Disabilities, CQC; Sarah Maguire, Director, Learning Disability England (formerly Housing & Support Alliance) and Managing Director, Choice Support; Dr Neil Ralph, Programme Manager for Mental Health and Learning Disability, Health Education England and; Jim Thomas, Programme Head – Workforce Innovation, Skills for Care have also agreed to speak. 

Lord Adebowale, Non-Executive Director, NHS England and Chief Executive Officer, Turning Point has kindly agreed to chair a session at this seminar.



‘Disability and Blood’: Special Issue of JLCDS out now!

Journal of Literary & Cultural Disability Studies – Volume 10, Issue 3 is out now.

Special Issue: Disability and Blood

Guest editors: Sören Fröhlich and Michael Davidson

JLCDS is available from Liverpool University Press, online and in print, to institutional and individual subscribers; it is also part of the Project MUSE collection to which the links below point.


Introduction: Blood Bound http://muse.jhu.edu/article/634642

Sören Fröhlich, Michael Davidson

Disability, Blood, and Liminality in Malory’s “Tale of the Sankgreal” http://muse.jhu.edu/article/634643

Tory V. Pearman

Otherwise Undisclosed: Blood, Species, and Benjy Compson’s Idiocy http://muse.jhu.edu/article/634644

David Oswald 

A State of Flux: On Bleeding http://muse.jhu.edu/article/634645

Roberto Brigati, Daniela Crocetti 

Deforming and Transforming: Towards a Theory of “Viral Mestizaje” in Chicano Literature http://muse.jhu.edu/article/634646

Victoria Carroll 

Blood Functions: Disability, Biosociality, and Facts of the Body http://muse.jhu.edu/article/634647

Kelly Fritsch 

Comments from the Field

The Voice of Disability, Seminar Series, Centre for Culture and Disability Studies, Liverpool Hope University http://muse.jhu.edu/article/634648

Owen Barden 

Disability, Coping, and Identity http://muse.jhu.edu/article/634649

Shahd Alshammari

Book Reviews

Fantasies of Identification: Disability, Gender, Race by Ellen Samuels (review)http://muse.jhu.edu/article/634650

David T. Mitchell

Depression: A Public Feeling by Ann Cvetkovich (review)http://muse.jhu.edu/article/634651

Corey Hickner-Johnson 


2017 PhD Scholarship Programme: UNSW Australia

UNSW Australia is seeking applicants for the 2017 Scientia PhD Scholarship Programme

Research Area of Interest: Knowledge Exchange – Social Policy, Government and Health Policy – Social and Educational Inclusion and Disability

Specific Topic Area:  People with cognitive disability and complex support needs – voices in policy and practice

Description of the proposed project: This project will be an empirical inquiry into the experiences of people with cognitive disability who experience intense social disadvantage and connected with mental health issues, substance misuse, homelessness and/or contact with the criminal justice system. The project captures the voices of this group via innovative strategies to ensure the challenges they encounter are understood in multiple arenas of social care.

More information on the scheme and the application process is available via the following link: https://www.arts.unsw.edu.au/research/research-culture/scientia-fellowships-scholarships/2017-scientia-scholarships/


While we’ve been away…

After ten years of disability seminars, 2015-2016 saw the Disability Research Forum (DRF) take a bit of a break. We will soon be announcing the return of our seminar series with a range of fascinating speakers.


While we’ve been away, Theorising Normalcy and the Mundane: Precious Position has been published by the University of Chester Press. Many of the chapter authors have, at one time or another, presented at a DRF seminar. It’s a book close to our hearts and we thought you’d like to know more.

Description: Emerging from the internationally recognised Theorising Normalcy and the Mundane conference series, the chapters in this book offer wide-ranging critiques of that most pervasive of ideas, “normal”. In particular, they explore the precarious positions we are presented with and, more often than not, forced into by “normal”, and its operating system, “normalcy” (Davis,2010). They are written by activists, students, practitioners and academics and offer related but diverse approaches. Importantly, however, the chapters also ask, what if increasingly precarious encounters with, and positions of, marginality and non-normativity offers us a chance (perhaps the chance) to critically explore the possibilities of “imagining otherwise”?

The book questions the privileged position of “non-normativity” in youth and unpacks the expectation of the “normal” student in both higher and primary education. It uses the position of transable people to push the boundaries of “disability”, interrogates the psycho-emotional disablism of box-ticking bureaucracy and spotlights the “urge to know” impairment. It draws on cross-movement and cross-disciplinary work around disability to explore topics as diverse as drug use, The Bible and relational autonomy. Finally, and perhaps most controversially, it explores the benefits of (re)instating “normal”. By paying attention to the opportunities presented amongst the fissures of critique and defiance, this book offers new applications and perspectives for thinking through the most ordinary of ideas, “normal”.

Editors: Rebecca Mallett (Principal Lecturer at the Sheffield Institute of Education, Sheffield Hallam University, UK), Cassandra A. Ogden (Senior Lecturer and Programme Leader for Sociology at the University of Chester, UK) and Jenny Slater (Senior Lecturer in Education and Disability Studies at Sheffield Hallam University, UK).

For more info: click here.


Call for Submissions: Knots: An Undergraduate Journal of Disability Studies #3

Journal: Knots: An Undergraduate Journal of Disability Studies

Submissions Due: 1st January 2017

Description: The Equity Studies program (at New College, University of Toronto) invites submissions for the next issue of Knots: An Undergraduate Journal of Disability Studies. Knots is a peer-reviewed journal that highlights high-calibre work by undergraduate students, and undergraduate alumni*, which moves beyond normative biomedical conceptions of disability and contributes to the development and growth of Disability Studies as a field. The editors are open to the widest array of topics that contribute to Disability Studies and to the continued examination and deconstruction of ableism. Submissions in the forms of essays, creative writing, book and film reviews, and art pieces are welcome. Submissions are not limited to students from the University of Toronto.

The theme for Knots Issue #3 is interdependency. Interdependency challenges ableist and capitalist assumptions of independence as a universal ideal. In ‘Changing the framework: Disability Justice’ Mia Mingus (2011) writes:

“we want to move away from the “myth of independence,” that everyone can and should be able to do everything on their own. I am not fighting for independence … I am fighting for an interdependence that embraces need and tells the truth: no one does it on their own and the myth of independence is just that, a myth.”

In a world where the desirability of independence is a rarely questioned norm, embracing interdependency can be a radical act of resistance for disabled people and allies. Interdependency exists on many levels, including (but not limited to) between humans; humans and animals; humans and machines; and within communities.

We welcome a range of submissions, including those that engage with the concept of interdependency in the context of Disability Studies. We encourage all submissions to take up an intersectional analysis.

Requirements and Reviewing: Submissions should be original and unpublished with an emphasis on completed (rather than intended) works. Essays should be 4500 words maximum, excluding bibliography; book and film reviews should be 1000 words maximum; art pieces should be accompanied by an artist’s statement not in excess of 500 words.

Style and Process: Manuscripts should be fully and correctly cited in APA style. Submissions will be evaluated on both significance and relevance to the field of Disability Studies as well as technical strength and clarity, and should be accompanied by a 100-word abstract and a short author bio. Submitted work will be subject to peer-review; successfully reviewed entries will be returned to submitters for revisions before being approved for publication. Once the editorial period has come to a close, we will not accept any changes to an accepted paper.

Submission Procedure & Information: The submission process is electronic: all manuscript submissions can be made online to knots.contact@gmail.com by no later than January 1st, 2017. The author/s name and the title of work both should appear in the subject line of the email; the full manuscript should be attached as a PDF file to the editors.

 Any questions regarding content, submission, or accessibility requests should be directed to knots.contact@gmail.com.

* ‘Undergraduate alumni’ refers to people who are no longer registered undergraduate students but who wish to submit work produced during their undergraduate degree.


CFP: ‘The Biopolitics of Art Education’ for Journal of Literary and Cultural Disability Studies

Journal: Journal of Literary and Cultural Disability Studies

Call for Papers for Special Issue: The Biopolitics of Art Education

Guest Editors: Claire Penketh (Disability and Education, Liverpool Hope University) and Jeff Adams (Education, University of Chester)

In The Biopolitics of Disability David Mitchell and Sharon Snyder argue that “curriculum needs to contextualize the lives of crip/queer people in order to create a context of receptivity for a more productive interaction with the embodied differences of crip/queer lives in school.” This special issue seeks to explore the ways art education might respond to such a call to develop disability pedagogy and curriculum content with “the active participation of crip/queer subjects.”

Art education has been long recognised and valued for its contribution to learning for children, young people, and adults. More recently there have been moves to explore art education as critical social practice, recognising the importance of art education to identity work. Although lines have been drawn around visual arts education, moves to incorporate contemporary practices have resulted in a more expansive range of approaches (e.g., video installations, performance art, and conceptual art pieces examining the use of text and ready-mades). However, art education has also been subject to criticisms of anachronistic and exclusionary practice.

This special issue asks: is there a need for curriculum reform in order to make crip/queer content integral to art education? How can art education respond to the request for creative pedagogies that resist processes of normalization? How can art education learn from people’s differences? How can literary and cultural representations of disability inform pedagogies in art education? Where does art education fit in recent developments in Disability Studies? How can Disability Studies be informed by recent research in art education?

Please email a one-page proposal to penketc@hope.ac.uk and j.adams@chester.ac.uk by April 1, 2017. Contributors can expect to be selected and notified by June 1, 2017. (Full drafts of the selected articles will be due on March 1, 2018). Please direct any questions to either guest editor.