1st Edition

The Routledge Handbook of Disability Activism

    512 Pages 30 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    512 Pages 30 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    The onslaught of neoliberalism, austerity measures and cuts, impact of climate change, protracted conflicts and ongoing refugee crisis, rise of far right and populist movements have all negatively impacted on disability. Yet, disabled people and their allies are fighting back and we urgently need to understand how, where and what they are doing, what they feel their challenges are and what their future needs will be.

    This comprehensive handbook emphasizes the importance of everyday disability activism and how activists across the world bring together a wide range of activism tactics and strategies. It also challenges the activist movements, transnational and emancipatory politics, as well as providing future directions for disability activism.

    With contributions from senior and emerging disability activists, academics, students and practitioners from around the globe, this handbook covers the following broad themes:

    • Contextualising disability activism in global activism

    • Neoliberalism and austerity in the global North

    • Rights, embodied resistance and disability activism

    • Belonging, identity and values: how to create diverse coalitions for rights

    • Reclaiming social positions, places and spaces

    • Social media, support and activism

    • Campus activism in higher education

    • Inclusive pedagogies, evidence and activist practices

    • Enabling human rights and policy

    • Challenges facing disability activism

    The Routledge Handbook of Disability Activism provides disability activists, students, academics, practitioners, development partners and policy makers with an authoritative framework for disability activism.


    Maria Berghs is an anthropologist with a PhD in sociology and social policy. She works in the field of medical anthropology and sociology, specialising in disability studies. Her research interests include disability, global health (sickle cell), humanitarianism, ethics, gender and West Africa (Sierra Leone).

    Tsitsi Chataika is the Chairperson and a Senior Lecturer in disability and inclusive education in the Department of Educational Foundations, University of Zimbabwe. Her recent publication is The Routledge Handbook of Disability in Southern Africa.

    Yahya El-Lahib is a long-time disability activist and Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Social Work, University of Calgary. His research focuses on the intersection of disability and displacement as interlocking systems of oppression that continue to shape the marginalization experiences of people with disabilities within and outside state borders.

    Kudakwashe Dube is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Africa Disability Alliance and has over 30 years of experience designing, managing, evaluating and monitoring development and disability programmes with international and grassroots movements. He is also chair of trustees of ADD International that fights for independence, equality and opportunities for disabled people living in poverty, alongside organisations of disabled people.

    "...there really is something in this collection for most and I would recommend it to novice and experienced scholars and activists alike. Any volume which prioritises disability rights is always going to be of value, particularly in such an insecure disablist world. However, in a post Covid-19 world the need to keep disability rights at the forefront of public consciousness in the context of human rights is even greater." -Lisa Davies, Asylum Magazine