Introduction to Disability and Citizenship
“All my life I have known that I was 'different' - special even - because the 'fact' has been brought home to me by the reactions of people around me. They either go out of their way to be nice to me, ignore me, or go out of their way to be awful to me, and it took me a long, long time to realise that these reactions were not necessarily to do with the kind of person I was, rather with what people assumed I was".[Gradwell, 1992]
[Left: Learn about how Ian Dury, musician, reacted to attitudes towards disabled people]
Questions to Consider
What does the phrase ‘disabled person’ mean to you?
Which negative terms do you know or use to describe disabled people? Which positive terms do you know or use to describe disabled people?
"A disabling society is itself disabled, for the thwarted potential of people with impairments constitutes the thwarted potential of that society as a whole". [Bolt, 2005] [Picture Right: Read a brief history of attitudes to disabled people]