If you want to read about whether on not my book blurb in ableiest, scroll down. If yr. looking for poems, scroll a little further. If you want read a great post by Paul Guest go here http://paulguest.blogspot.com/. If you are looking for yoga/disability stuff go here crippledyogi.blogspot.com. If you want to here more blabbiety-blab of my perception of disability, stay here.
It may or may not be bodily impairments that created the idea of the shut-in. Whatever impairments one might have, as Sunny Taylor notes, it is arguable that the body is 'disabled' by a societal construction which includes 'abled' people not wanting to be in the presence of 'disabled' people. Hence, the 'abled' people have created (historically) an archetectural landscape that is geared toward those who 'walk' without assistance. This may be a chicken/egg thing. But, it is no accident. The so-called norm doesn't want to look at the so-called disabled, which are merely reminders of their own eroding bodies. so, except forced by law, they create an environment meant to exclude everyone who is not spry and sexy. This does not only apply to people with disabilities, but parents of small children, older people, and people who are more than average weight. In a certain sense, archetecture in America is a reflection of Elle magazine!
But why would the so-called abled not want to be in the presence of the so-called disabled?
a. No one who makes it to an age much older than Janis, Jimmy, and Jim will be able to stop their own bodily eroding. At some point, they will loss sight, hearing, walking. No one is immune to some form of 'crippling.' People fear this like the plague and the so-called 'disabled' are their reminders. If 'they' can keep their illusion of 'us' and 'them' they can hold onto their illusion that they will look like Kate Moss or Ashton Kushner well into their 80's.
The so-called abled have not knowledge of the 'disabled.' This, again, is partially because we are strongly segregated. We are discouraged from participating fully in society. Ironically, people, without knowing what I 'have' or even what cerebral palsy is, are perfectly comfortable in making a list of assumptions about me (all wrong) to my face.
People insist that abled/disabled is a dicotomy and abled is 'always' better. Yes, many, many people who are disabled are suffering from impairments and do not want to be disabled and are in pain. Others are not. The entire Deaf community, for example, is based on an idea that does not privledge hearing. If you watch a film like 'Sound and Fury' you will see how/why many Deaf parents actively do not what their Deaf children to be 'cured.' I think many people with cerebral palsy have a likewise idea. I fear that without cerebral palsy, I would not be a 'whole' person. I might be an uninteresting airhead! Disability has added so much beauty and depth to my life.
I AM NOT ASSUMING (just guessing) that there is a strong division between those who are born/those who become disabled. Those born might be inclined to think of their disabled bodies as whole. Those who become disabled are affected not only by a new body, also by an mourning process for what was. To me, to say, would you rather be 'abled' is like saying would I rather be Jewish or gay or a man. How the fuck would I know?
That's all for now.