Acting Toward Social Change
Edited By David J. Connor, Jan W. Valle and Chris Hale
Foreword: Disability Studies in Education and the Sociological Imagination
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Disability Studies in Education and the Sociological Imagination
This volume of outstanding essays continues a critical scholarly tradition in the growing field of disability studies in education (DSE) of examining, exploring, and interrogating cultural and professional portrayals of disability and issues of human difference in the schools. To the reader familiar with disability studies (DS) scholarship, these essays will chime familiar tones while searching the terrains of childhood and schooling for insight and possibility. For readers more accustomed to reading research in American special education, this book may bring new and unusual notions to the frontal lobe while flipping standard assumptions and discourses upside down.
Understanding how DSE and the American field of special education overlap and diverge, coalesce, and conflict is not a simple matter. Undoubtedly, both deal with the education of young persons with disabilities in the public schools. Further, some special education researchers and the vast majority of DSE scholars have an investment in the development of successful programs of inclusive education. But beyond those bare simplicities, how are the two related … or not?
I will begin this volume of DSE essays by pointing to two historical moments in the early twentieth century, two events that display many of the political and conceptual emphases of special education and DSE, allowing us to envision each in contrast to the other. I will offer a historical scene from the...
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