Affiliation: Interdisciplinary Studies
Disability is a constant, pervasive, and deeply misunderstood element of human existence. While prevalence rates are unclear, at least 15-20% of all people have a disability. Virtually all people will have a disability at some point in their lives due to accident, disease, or old age. Few lives remain untouched by disability. We experience disability in our family, in our friends, in ourselves, and in every social, political, professional, or religious community. People with disabilities, throughout the world and in large numbers, remain disenfranchised, segregated, and oppressed. The systematic study of the world, through the lens of Disability Studies, addresses this injustice.
The field of Disability Studies examines disability as a social, cultural, and political phenomenon, and explores how disability is defined and represented. The Disability Studies Minor is an interdisciplinary approach to examining the interplay between the lived experience of disability and the social construction of disability. The Minor balances theoretical exploration with practical application, and provides students with a broad understanding of disability history, cultural representation, social justice and civil rights issues, policy concerns, and current ethical debates.