1st Edition

Disability and Social Media Global Perspectives

Edited By Katie Ellis, Mike Kent Copyright 2017
    362 Pages 28 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    362 Pages 28 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Social media is popularly seen as an important media for people with disability in terms of communication, exchange and activism. These sites potentially increase both employment and leisure opportunities for one of the most traditionally isolated groups in society. However, the offline inaccessible environment has, to a certain degree, been replicated online and particularly in social networking sites. Social media is becoming an increasingly important part of our lives yet the impact on people with disabilities has gone largely unscrutinised.

    Similarly, while social media and disability are often both observed through a focus on the Western, developed and English-speaking world, different global perspectives are often overlooked. This collection explores the opportunities and challenges social media represents for the social inclusion of people with disabilities from a variety of different global perspectives that include Africa, Arabia and Asia along with European, American and Australasian perspectives and experiences.



    Chapter One: Introduction: Social Disability

    Part One: Advocacy

    Chapter Two: The Social Media and Deaf Empowerment. Polish Deaf Communities Online Fight for Representation (Magdalena Zdrodowska)

    Chapter Three: Personal reflections on the #107days campaign. Transformative, subversive or accidental? (Sara Ryan and George Julian)

    Chapter Four: Confirming Normalcy: 'Inspiration Porn' and the Construction of the Disabled Subject? (Beth Haller and Jeffrey Preston)

    Chapter Five: Bedding Out: art, activism and Twitter (Lucy Burke and Liz Crow)

    Part Two: Access

    Chapter Six: The growing importance of accessible social media (Scott Hollier)

    Chapter Seven: Transport mésadapté: Exploring online disability activism in Montréal (Laurence Parent and Marie-Eve Veilleux)

    Chapter Eight: Interactive inclusive – Designing tools for activism and empowerment (Tom Bieling, Tiago Martins and Gesche Joost)

    Chapter Nine: New Media and Accessible Emergency Communications: A United States-Based Meta Analysis (DeeDee Bennett, Helena Mitchell and Paul M. A. Baker)

    Part Three: Communications

    Chapter Ten: Social Media Use and Mediated Sociality Among Individuals with Communication Disabilities in the Digital Age (Meryl Alper and Beth Haller)

    Chapter Eleven: #socialconversations: disability representation and audio description on Marvel’s Daredevil (Katie Ellis)

    Chapter Twelve: Articulating Vulnerability and Interdependence in Networked Social Space (Brian Goldfarb and John Armenta)

    Chapter Thirteen: Social media and disability inclusion: Critical reflections of a Zimbabwean activist (Kudzai Shava)

    Part Four: Education

    Chapter Fourteen: Opportunities for eLearning, social media and disability (Mike Kent)

    Chapter Fifteen: A Phenomenology of Media Making Experience: Disability Studies and Wearable Cameras (D. Andy Rice)

    Chapter Sixteen: Blackboard as in/accessible social media: Updating education, teaching and learning (Leanne McRae)

    Chapter Seventeen: Dyslexics 'Knowing How' to challenge ‘Lexism’ (Craig Collinson and Owen Barden)

    Part Five: Community

    Chapter Eighteen: ‘Talking my language’: The AthletesFirst project and the use of blogging in virtual disability sport communities (Andrea Bundon)

    Chapter Nineteen: Posting autism: Online self-representation strategies in Tistje, a Flemish blog on Living on the spectrum from the front row (Anneleen Masschelein and Leni Van Goidsenhoven)

    Chapter Twenty: From awareness to inclusion: Creating bridges with the disability community through social media and civil society in Japan (Muneo Kaigo)

    Part Six: New Directions

    Chapter Twenty one: Self-representation considerations for people who use augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) and social media (Amanda Hynan, Janice Murray and Juliet Goldbart)

    Chapter Twenty two: Disability and discourse: An Arabian example (Najma Al Zidjaly)

    Chapter Twenty three: Using social media to advance the social rights of people with disability in China: The Beijing One Plus One Disabled Persons’ Cultural Development Centre (Jian Xu, Mike Kent, Katie Ellis and He Zhang)


    Katie Ellis is Senior Research Fellow in the Department of Internet Studies and convener of the Critical Disability Studies Research Network at Curtin University. Her research focuses on disability and the media extending across both representation and active possibilities for social inclusion. Her books include Disability and New Media (2011; with Mike Kent), Disabling Diversity (2008), Disability, Ageing and Obesity: Popular Media Identifications (2014; with Debbie Rodan & Pia Lebeck), Disability and the Media (2015; with Gerard Goggin), and Disability and Popular Culture (2015).

    Mike Kent is the head of department and a senior lecturer in the Department of Internet Studies at Curtin University. His main research interests focus on the two overlapping areas of people with disabilities and their access to communications technology as well as tertiary and online education. He is co-author, with Katie Ellis, of Disability and New Media (Routledge, 2011), and co-editor (with Tama Leaver) of An Education in Facebook? Higher Education and the World's Largest Social Network (Routledge, 2014). His current research includes the forthcoming books Massive Open Online Courses and Higher Education: Where to Next? (Routledge) with Rebecca Bennett and Chinese Social Media Today: Critical Perspectives (Routledge) with Katie Ellis and Jian Xu.

    ‘This pioneering volume gives us a widescreen account of the profound, complex, and fast-moving world of disability and social media. Essential reading for anyone interested in understanding the cutting-edge of Internet, communication, and society, not to mention the rich area of disability which opens up new perspectives on key questions in technology, design, participation, democracy, and social justice.’ - Gerard Goggin, University of Sydney, Australia

    'This vibrant collection highlights the inherent variety and variability of social media, drawing attention to disability in multiple forms and contexts. Touching on technological design, educational contexts, communication, community, and activism, It will be of interest to scholars in media, communication, and disability studies. Furthermore, it marks an important global extension of social media research. Fascinating, diverse, and engaging.' - Elizabeth Ellcessor Indiana University, U.S.A