DRF News

RDS New Issue features a Forum on “Popular Culture and Disability”

A few weeks old now but this post is better late than never!

From RDS:

We are pleased to announce the release of an amazing double issue of The Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal (RDS). Volume 10, Issues 1&2 marks the 10th anniversary of the publication of RDS. We look forward to 10 more years of excellence in the field of disability studies!

This issue contains a forum on “Popular Culture and Disability” guest edited by Holly Manaseri and Raphael Raphael. Forum authors explore everything from freak show discourse in XMen films to Lady Gagas use of disability imagery. The forum is followed by a diverse line-up of research articles lead by an article on gender, marriage and disability in Jordan co-authored by Salam Jalal & Susan Gabel.

Subscriptions to RDS start at only $25.00 for students. The print version is available only to subscribers. Don’t forget to check out our blog and Facebook page. Happy reading! 

Volume 10, Issues 1 & 2 (Copyright 2014)

Table of Contents

Editorial: Isolation: A Diary of Subtle Discrimination – Megan A. Conway, PhD, RDS Managing Editor

Forum: Popular Culture and Disability – Guest Editors Holly Manaseri, PhD, Hawaii State Department of Education, USA and Raphael Raphael, PhD, University of Hawaii, Manoa, USA

Forum Editors Introduction p. 6

Forum Articles

The Legacy of 19th Century Popular Freak Show Discourse in the 21st Century X-Men Films – Fiona Pettit, PhD, Exeter University, United Kingdom 

Keep It Right – Homeland: The Female Body, Disability, and Nation – Joëlle Rouleau, University of Montreal, Canada

Body Vandalism: Lady Gaga, Disability, and Popular Culture – Christopher R. Smit, PhD, Calvin College, USA

Precarious Inclusions; Re-Imagining Disability, Race, Masculinity and Nation in My Name is Khan – Nadia Kanani, York University, Canada

Research Articles

Physical Disability, Gender, and Marriage in Jordanian Society – Salam Jalal, EDD & Susan Gabel, PhD, Chapman University, USA 2

Employment Outcomes for Young Adults With Autism Spectrum Disorders – Ashleigh Hillier, PhD & Monica Galizzi, PhD, University of Massachusetts, USA 

Audio Description In Italy: An Anecdote Or A Social Integration Policy? – María Valero Gisbert, University of Parma, Italy 

Trends Toward the Integration and Inclusion of Students with Disabilities in Russia – S.V. Alehina, PhD, Institute on Inclusive Education, Moscow, Russia & Debra Cote, PhD, Erica J. Howell, PhD, Vita Jones, PhD, & Melinda Pierson, PhD, California State University, USA

Creative Works

Lucky to Be Here – Felicia Nimue Ackerman, Brown University, USA

Book and Media Reviews

The Book of Goodbyes: Poems by Jillian Weise – Reviewed by Johnson Cheu, PhD, Michigan State University, USA 

Writing Disability: A Critical History by Sara Newman – Reviewed by Dax Garcia, University of Hawaii, USA 

A Life Without Words, Directed by Adam Isenberg – Reviewed by Amanda McLaughlin, University of Hawaii, USA 

Shakin’ All Over: Popular Music and Disability by George McKay – Reviewed by Steven E. Brown, University of Hawaii, USA 

Disability Studies Dissertation Abstracts

Jonathon Erlen, University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA


Children, Familes and Young People, Critical Theory, Disability Studies and..., Events and Conferences, Inclusion, Majority/Minority Worlds, Policy and Legislation

Book Launch: Disabled Children’s Childhood Studies: Critical Approaches in a Global Context

The Birkbeck Centre for Medical Humanities invites you to a book launch with wine reception for Disabled Children’s Childhood Studies: Critical Approaches in a Global Context edited by Tillie Curran and Katherine Runswick-Cole.

6pm-8pm, Friday 31st January

Peltz Gallery, School of Arts, 43 Gordon Square, Birkbeck, University of London, WC1H 0PD

Free and open to all, but registration required. Please email Harriet Cooper to register (h.cooper@bbk.ac.uk). Book Launch on Fri 31 Jan_’Disabled Children’s Childhood Studies’


DRF News

New Publication: Special Issue on “Translating Happiness: Medicine, Culture and Social Progress”

The special issue of the journal Health, Culture and Society, “Translating Happiness: Medicine, Culture and Social Progress” has just been published and is available through open access.

The issue includes:

Editorial Introduction ~ K. Aubrecht

Encounters with Translations of Happiness ~ T. Titchkosky

The Neoliberal Circulation of Affects: Happiness, accessibility and the capacitation of disability as wheelchair ~ K. Fritsch

As If You Have a Choice: Autism mothers and the remaking of the human ~ P. N. Douglas

Alterity In/Of Happiness: Reflecting on the radical possibilities of unruly bodies ~ E. Chandler and C. Rice

A link to the issue table of contents is included below. PDFs can be downloaded by clicking on “PDF” (on the right side of the page).




DRF News

CFP: Knots: An Undergraduate Journal of Disability Studies

Knots: An Undergraduate Journal of Disability Studies

Call For Papers

***SUBMISSION DEADLINE: January 30th, 2014***

The Equity Studies program, New College, University of Toronto, invites submissions for the inaugural edition of Knots: An Undergraduate Journal of Disability Studies. Knots is a peer-reviewed journal that will highlight high-calibre work by undergraduate students  and undergraduate alumni that 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 discussion of relevant themes and topics that contribute to Disability Studies and the continued examination and deconstruction of ableism. Submissions in the forms of essays, book and film reviews, and art pieces are welcome. Suggested themes might include, but are by no means limited to:

  • intersectional analyses of sexuality/gender/class/race & disability
  • crip community, activism, allyship and disability rights;
  • representations, interpretations of disability in everyday life; in arts, athletics, and performance;
  • disability in local and global contexts; interactions in the medical and rehabilitative communities;
  • education; learning and developmental disabilities;
  • physical disability; psychiatric disability; M/madness;
  • eugenics; disability history; disability rights; employment;
  • representations in pop culture; representation and/or expression through the arts; etc.


Requirements and Reviewing:  Submissions should be original and unpublished with an emphasis on completed (rather than intended) works. Essays should be 2500 words maximum, excluding bibliography; book and film reviews should be 1000 words maximum; art pieces should be accompanied by an artists’ statement not in excess of 500 words. 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. Submitted work will be subject to peer-review; successfully reviewed entries will be returned to submitters for edits before being approved for publication. Once the editing 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 30th, 2013. 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 co-editor Sarah Hoedlmoser (sarah.hoedlmoser@gmail.com).

Children, Familes and Young People, Disability Studies and..., Inclusion, Majority/Minority Worlds, Publications

New book: Youth Responding to Lives: an International Reader

Youth: Responding to Lives – An International Reader

Edited by Andrew Azzopardi

Part of the Studies in Inclusive Education series edited by Roger Slee

Including a chapter by DRF member, Jenny Slater: Playing Grown-up: Using Critical Disability Perspectives to Rethink Youth

This book draws from various fields of knowledge, in an effort to theorise, create new and innovative conceptual platforms and develop further the hybrid idea of discourses around social inclusion and youth (from policy, practice and research perspectives).

Youth: Responding to lives – An international handbook attempts to fill the persistent gap in the problematisation and understanding of inclusion, communalism, citizenship – that are intertwined within the complex youth debate. It writhes and wriggles to highlight the interconnections between the encounters, events and endeavors in young people’s lives.

The focus of this edited work is also intended to help us understand how young people shape their development, involvement, and visibility as socio-political actors within their communities. It is this speckled experience of youth that remains one of the most electrifying stages in a community’s lifecycle.

Contributors to this text have engaged with notions around identity and change, involvement, social behavior, community cohesion, politics and social activism. The chapters offer an array of critical perspectives on social policies and the broad realm of social inclusion/exclusion and how it affects young people.

This book essentially analyses equal opportunities and its allied concepts, including inequality, inequity, disadvantage and diversity that have been studied extensively across all disciplines of social sciences and humanities but now need a youth studies ‘application’.


DRF News, Uncategorized

New Issue of Review of Disability Studies is now out!

Volume 9, Issue 2&3 of the Review of Disability Studies is now posted online at www.rds.hawaii.edu.  This double issue features the forum “Writing the Global Family: International Perspectives on Disability Studies and Family Narratives” guest edited by Janet Sauer and Philip Ferguson. The issue features an exciting range of articles, from a conversation between a Korean daughter and her mother about visual representations of disability, to narratives of family among wheelchair basketball players in Ecuador.

Subscribe to RDS and receive a print edition! Subscriptions start at only $25.00 for students.

Also, check out our RDS Blog, Podcast, and Facebook page!



Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal: Volume 9, Issues 2 & 3 (Copyright 2013)

Table of Contents

Editorial: What Ever Happened to Mary Ingalls?: Megan A. Conway, Ph.D., RDS Managing Editor p. 3

      Forum: Global Families

Forum Introduction from Guest Editors: Writing the Global Family, International Perspectives on Disability Studies and Family Narratives – Janet Sauer, Lesley University, USA and Philip M. Ferguson, Chapman University, USA p. 5

Forum Articles

Memories and Re-Memories of My Mom’s Eye Bandage: Trans-Relation Among the Norms, Otherness, and Resistance p. 10 – Sujung Um, Teachers College, Columbia University, USA and Jong Lye Won, Korea National College of Rehabilitation and Welfare, Korea

Growing Up: Disability and Cultural Dynamics in an Egyptian/American Family p. 21 – Christine-Marie Youssef, USA

The ‘Othered’ Sister: Family Secrets, Relationships, and Society p. 30 – Melissa M. Jones, Ph.D., Northern Kentucky University, USA

What’s Behind the Curtain? A Family’s Search for an Inclusive Oz p. 41 – Janet Sauer, Lesley University, USA

Lifetime Struggle: A Family Narration of Disability Experience in Iran p. 54 – Negin H. Goodrich, Purdue University, Calumet, USA2

Disablism and Diaspora: British Pakistani Families and Disabled Children p. 63 – Dan Goodley, University of Sheffield, England, Katherine Runswick-Cole, Manchester Metropolitan University, England and Uzma Mahmoud, Manchester Metropolitan University, England

Algorithms of Access: Immigrant Mothers Negotiating Educational Resources and Services for Their Children With Disabilities p. 79 – Gay Wilgus, City College, City University of New York, USA and Jan W. Valle, City College, City University of New York, USA

Linda Ware, State University of New York, Geneseo, NY, USA Wheelchair Basketball Teams as “Second Families” in Highland Ecuador p. 92 – Nicholas A. Rattray, Indiana University, USA


Book and Media Reviews

The Problem Body, Projecting Disability on Film by Sally Chivers and Nicole Markotic p.104 – Reviewed by Raphael Raphael

The Silvering Screen: Old Age and Disability in Cinema by Sally Chivers p.106 – Reviewed by Amanda T. McLaughlin

Perfect Chaos: A Daughter’s Journey to Survive Bipolar, a Mother’s Struggle to Save Her by Linea Johnson and Cinda Johnson p.10 – Reviewed by Charmaine Crockett

Lovers Lame by Robert Rudney p.108 – Reviewed by Steven E. Brown


Disability Studies Dissertation Abstracts p.109

DRF News

Call for Papers: ‘Disability and the Gothic’ Edited Volume

The relationship between disability and the Gothic, as Martha Stoddard Holmes rightly observes, has been undertheorized by scholars of the genre. This is surprising, given the intensity with which the Gothic has historically explored and exploited the prejudices associated with human difference as manifested in physiological and mental deviations from a perceived norm.

The proposed volume, which will be presented within the established International Gothic Series, published by Manchester University Press, will explore the uses and abuses of disability in Gothic fiction from the eighteenth century to the present, and will advance a genuinely international and multicultural analysis of this neglected aspect of Gothic stylistics. We particularly welcome papers that discuss Gothic textuality beyond the established European and American canon.

Issues which might be explored by contributors could include (but are not limited to):

  • Abject bodies                                           
  • Human vivisection
  • Amputation                                            
  • Leprosy
  • Birth defects
  • Mental illness
  • Body Integrity
  • Phantom limbs
  • Body modification                                  
  • Pigmentation variations
  • Branding and scarification                    
  • Post-apocalyptic bodies
  • Conjoined siblings                                  
  • Prostheses
  • Corrective surgery                                  
  • Queer bodies
  • Degeneration                                          
  • Ritual disfigurement
  • Hermaphroditism                                  
  • Supernumerary limbs
  • Hospital culture                                      
  • Zoomorphism

Proposals of approximately 500 words should be sent to the editors by 30 September 2013.  The editors are: William Hughes (Department of English, Bath Spa University, UK) email w.hughes@bathspa.ac.uk and Andrew Smith (School of English Literature, Language and Linguistics, University of Sheffield, UK) email andrew.smith1@sheffield.ac.uk.


If you are interested in this, you might also be interested in…

Call For Papers for Precarious Positions ~ Encounters with Normalcy – 4th Annual International Conference ***Theorising Normalcy and the Mundane*** 3rd + 4th September 2013 at Sheffield Hallam University can be found here.


DRF News

CFP: “Horror (as/is) Humor, Humor (as/is) Horror: sLaughter in Popular Cinema” (edited collection)

In his review of Tavernier’s Coup de torchon, David Kehr wrote in When Movies Mattered: Reviews from a Transformative Decade,

Death, violence, and moral corruption aren’t just slapstick props … but agonizingly real presences, and their comedy isn’t a release from horror, but a confrontation with it.… [H]umor and horror exist side by side,  they play on the very thin line that separates a laugh from a scream, touching the hysteria common to both.… The best black humor makes us feel the horror. (p.186)

Scholarly collections in Humor and Horror Studies have largely conceived of them as separate genres and fields. Yet popular culture has increasingly seen a rise in the emotional and visceral confluence of humor and horror—from black comedies, dark fantasy and a renewed interest in fairy tale adaptations, to freshliterary works, graphic novels, and politics and satire.

Scholarly essays are sought for a potential collection on the nexus of humor and horror—sLaughter—in popular culture texts with a primary focus on film. Topics may include, but are clearly not limited to: Genre (e.g., parody, science / speculative fiction, thriller, dark fantasy, cyberpunk / splatterpunk, “classical” comedy / drama, post-humanism, terror/ism, apocalyptica and TEOTWAWKI); Creator / Auteur (e.g., Joss Whedon, Stephen King, Chuck Palahniuk, Mary Harron, Matt Groening, Seth McFarlane, the Soska sisters, the Coen brothers, Bret Easton Ellis, Charles Bukowski, Amy Lynn Best, David Cronenberg, Tim Burton, John Carpenter); or Theory / Theorist (e.g., structuralism, grotesquerie / freakery, transgressionism, attraction=repulsion, bodily mutilation / ablation, postmodernism, biomechanics / cyborg interfaces).

We are NOT interested in Abbot and Costello, “camp,” or anything else offering the audience a chance to be “psychologically distanced” from mortal terror—beyond the fact that they are viewing images on a screen.  Though we are interested in zombies, lycanthropy, vampirism, and that lot, we envision a much broader and more scholarly collection than the fanzone tends to produce—much scarier than Twilight, etc.—that addresses the intersection of humor/horror.  We want you to make us FEEL it, and tell us why it’s important.

If you are interested, please submit a 250 word abstract and one-page CV to both Johnson Cheu (cheu@msu.edu) and John A Dowell (jdowell@msu.edu) by 15th September 2012.

DRF News

CFP: ‘Tim Burton: Works, Characters, Themes’ (for a proposed edited collection)

Mark Salisburry writes of Tim Burton:

“Burton’s characters are often outsiders, misunderstood and misperceived, misfits encumbered by some degree of duality, operating on the fringes of their own particular society, tolerated, but pretty much left to their own devices.” (Burton on Burton, xviii-xix)

Burton’s films have explored this theme of outsiders and many others over a wide array of genres.  Scholarly essays are now sought for a potential collection on the work and artistry of Tim Burton  provisionally entitled “Tim Burton: Works, Characters, Themes”. 

All films and theoretical approaches welcome. Possible topics may include but are not limited to:

  • Outsiders, Misfits, and conformity/nonconformity
  • Cyborgs, “Grotesquire/Freakery” and other bodily non-conformities
  • Heroes/Villains
  • Early work (Disney, “Frankenweenie,” Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure)
  • Burton as Auteur
  • Johnny Depp, and “Celebrity/Star” theory
  • Adaptations (Dark Shadows, Sleepy Hollow, Alice, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Planet of the Apes, James and the Giant Peach, Sweeney Todd,  etc.)
  • Ed Wood
  • Sci-fi (e.g. Mars Attacks)
  • Batman, Batman Returns!
  • Burton and fairy tales; Burton as fairy tale
  • Burton and “Beauty” (films, bodies, and otherwise)
  • Death, Ghosts, Haunting
  • Humor, Horror, Satire, Allegory
  • Family, Fathers, etc. (Big Fish, etc.)
  • Mixed-genre (comedy-horror, Beattlejuice, ormusical-comedy-horror, Sweeney Todd, etc.)
  • Suburbia/”The City”
  • Love, attraction, rejection, sexuality
  • TV work: (Alfred Hitchcock Presents: “The Jar,” ; Cartoon-TV’s “Family Dog”)

Please note: A potential publisher has expressed possible interest; work on this project may be relatively swift.

If you are interested, please submit a 250 word abstract and one-page CV to Johnson Cheu (cheu@msu.edu) by 1st October 2012.

DRF News, Publications

New issue of Review of Disability Studies (8:2) is now available

The new issue, Volume 8 Issue 2, of the Review of Disability Studies is now posted online at www.rds.hawaii.edu.

Articles include:

  • Teacher Educators’ Varied Definitions of Learning Disabilities – Rachael Gabriel (University of Connecticut, USA) and Jessica Lester (Washington State University, USA)
  • Parental Chronic Illness: Current Limitations and Considerations for Future Research  – J.W. (Bill) Anderson (Illinois State University, USA), Caitlin A. Huth (Eastern Illinois University, USA), Susan A. Garcia (Western Governors University, USA) and Jennifer Swezey (Advocate Lutheran Children’s Hospital, USA)
  • Disability Studies and the Language of Mental Illness – Katie Aubrecht (University of Toronto, Canada)
  • Education of Children with Disabilities as Constructed within a Russian Newspaper for Teachers – Maria Oreshkina (University of Scranton, USA), Jessica Lester (Washington State University, USA) and Sharon Judge (Old Dominion University, USA)
  • Conceptualizing the “Dis” of Our Abilities: A Heuristic Phenomenology – Jamie Buffington-Adams (Indiana University, USA)

The new issue also includes Book and Media Reviews (of The Stress of Combat, the Combat of Stress: Changing Strategies towards Ex-Service Men and Women and Historicizing Fat in Anglo-American Culture) as well as Disability Studies Dissertation Abstracts.