Since the 1970s, the international disability rights movement, the United Nations and national governments across the world have attempted to ameliorate the status of the disabled population through a range of legislative and policy measures primarily in the areas of health, education, employment, accessible environments and social security. While the discourse in the disability sector in India has shifted from charity and welfare to human rights and entitlements, disability studies — as an interdisciplinary academic terrain that focuses on the contributions, experiences, history and culture of persons with disabilities — has not yet taken root.
This volume collates some of the most recent pioneering work on disability studies from across the country. The essays presented here engage with the concept of disability from a variety of disciplinary positions, sociocultural contexts and subjective experiences within the overarching framework of the Indian reality. The contributors — including some with disabilities themselves — provide a well-rounded perspective, in shifting focus from disability as a medical condition only needing clinical intervention to giving it due social and academic legitimacy.
This book outlines key issues that would be germane to any disability studies endeavour in India and South Asia, and will appeal to academics, activists, institutions, laypersons and professionals involved in social welfare, sociology, disability studies, women’s studies, psychiatry, rehabilitation, and social and preventive medicine.
Table of Contents
List of Tables. List of Figures. List of Plates. List of Abbreviations. Glossary. Acknowledgements. Introduction Renu Addlakha. Part I. Disability Movement, Disability Rights and Disability Studies 1. Historicising Disability in India: Questions of Subject and Method Shilpaa Anand 2. Disability Rights and the Emergence of Disability Studies Jagdish Chander 3. Tracking Disability through the United Nations N. Sundaresan. Part II. Family, Care and Work 4. Prenatal Diagnosis: Where do We Draw the Line? Anita Ghai and Rachana Johri 5. Burden of Caring: Families of the Disabled in Urban India Upali Chakravarti 6. Exploring Constructs of Intellectual Disability and Personhood in Haryana and Delhi Nilika Mehrotra and Shubhangi Vaidya 7. Corporeality, Mobility and Class: An Ethnography of Work-related Experiences in Urban India Amit Upadhyay. Part III. Gender and Disability 8. Bhalo Meye: Cultural Construction of Gender and Disability in Bengal Nandini Ghosh 9. Body Politics and Disabled Femininity: Perspectives of Adolescent Girls from Delhi Renu Addlakha 10. Identity Formation and Transnational Discourses: Thinking beyond Identity Politics Michele Friedner 11. The Inner World of Adolescent Girls with Hearing Impairment: Two Case Studies Sandhya Limaye. Part IV. Assertion of Difference through Art and Communication 12. Body/Text: Art Project on Deafness and Communication José Abad Lorente 13. Blind With Camera: Photographs by the Visually Impaired Partho Bhowmick. Part V. Contesting Marginality at Micro- and Macro-levels 14. From Mental Illness to Disability: Choices for Women Users/Survivors of Psychiatry in Self and Identity Constructions Bhargavi V. Davar 15. Need for a Framework for Combined Disability and Gender Budgeting Asha Hans, Amrita Patel and S. B. Agnihotri 16. Sameness and Difference: Twin Track Empowerment for Women with Disabilities Amita Dhanda 17. Participation, Inclusion and the Law: Moving beyond Rhetoric Jeeja Ghosh. About the Editor. Notes on Contributors. Index
Renu Addlakha is Associate Professor at the Centre for Women’s Development Studies, New Delhi.