The United Nations has recognized December 3 as the International Day of Persons with Disabilities. The White House issued a proclamation about the importance of recognizing the struggles of those with disabilities. Disability Studies is a growing field in academe, one in which Duke University Press is well-represented. Check out some of our titles below.
Queering disability studies, while also expanding the purview of queer and sexuality studies, these essays in Sex and Disability, edited by Robert McRuer and Anna Mollow shake up notions about who and what is sexy and sexualizable, what counts as sex, and what desire is. At the same time, they challenge conceptions of disability in the dominant culture, queer studies, and disability studies.
Robert McRuer is also co-editor (with Abby L. Wilkerson) of Desiring Disability, a special issue of GLQ, which xplores how the frameworks for queer theory and disability studies suggest new possibilities for one another, for other identity-based frameworks of activism and scholarship, and for cultural studies in general.
In her new book Animacies: Biopolitics, Racial Mattering, and Queer Affect, Mel Y. Chen draws on studies of sexuality, race, and affect to consider how matter that is considered insensate, immobile, deathly, or otherwise "wrong," animates cultural life in important ways.
Historians are addressing disability, too. Disability and History, a special issue of Radical History Review edited by Teresa Meade and David Serlin, explores how historical forces and cultural contexts have produced disability as a constantly shifting and socially constructed concept.
The Critical Limits of Embodiment is a special issue of Public Culture edited by Carol A. Breckenridge and Candace Vogler. It examines the commonsense foundations of disability studies, which tend to universalize Western norms and assumptions in which the normal is foregrounded and the able body forms the basis for the universal liberal subject.