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Disability studies, disabled people and the struggle for inclusion

Taylor & Francis
Publication Date
  • H Social Sciences (General)
  • Hm Sociology
  • Hn Social History And Conditions. Social Problems. Social Reform
  • Ecology
  • Education
  • Geography


This paper traces the relationship between the emergence of disability studies and the struggle for meaningful inclusion for disabled people with particular reference to the work of a pivotal figure in these developments: Len Barton. It is argued that the links between disability activism and the academy were responsible for the emergence of disability studies and that this has had an important influence on mainstream sociology and social and educational policy nationally and internationally. It is evident, however, that the impact of these developments has been only marginal and that in light of recent concerns about the global economy, environmental change and unprecedented population growth, the need for meaningful inclusion is more urgent than ever and cannot be dependent on the work of a few key individuals for its success.

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