#SaytheWord: A Disability Culture Commentary on the Erasure of "Disability"

Erin Andrews, Anjali J. Forber-Pratt, Linda R. Mona, Emily M. Lund, Carrie R. Pilarski, Rochelle Balter

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: To inform the field of rehabilitation psychology about the sociocultural implications of the term "disability," and explain the rationale behind the #SaytheWord movement, a social media call to embrace disability identity. Method: Review of the literature on disability terminology, the history of language use, and the relationship between attitudes toward disability and language. We reflect on the role of disability within the field of psychology and within the American Psychological Association (APA), including the underrepresentation of disabled psychologists and trainees with disabilities and the lack of mentorship opportunities available in the field. Implications: The authors argue that erasure of the word "disability" can have unintended and adverse consequences. We describe how erasure of disability identity in the context of current sociopolitical efforts to reduce and eliminate public services and supports for people with disabilities is especially threatening to members of the disability community. To move forward, the authors postulate that the disability movement must reconcile its own history of exclusion and adopt a disability justice framework. Conclusion: The field of psychology has a rich tradition of appreciation of cultural diversity and individual difference; yet, disability has largely been left out of these efforts. The disability movement is moving toward the status of a diverse cultural group with a social justice agenda parallel to those of other marginalized communities. The authors posit that psychology must play a stronger role in advancing the human rights of people with disabilities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalRehabilitation Psychology
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019

Fingerprint

Psychology
Social Justice
Disabled Persons
Language
Social Media
Cultural Diversity
Mentors
Terminology
Individuality
Rehabilitation
History

Keywords

  • Attitudes
  • Culture
  • Disability
  • Disability identity
  • Language

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Rehabilitation
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Cite this

#SaytheWord : A Disability Culture Commentary on the Erasure of "Disability". / Andrews, Erin; Forber-Pratt, Anjali J.; Mona, Linda R.; Lund, Emily M.; Pilarski, Carrie R.; Balter, Rochelle.

In: Rehabilitation Psychology, 01.01.2019.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Andrews, Erin ; Forber-Pratt, Anjali J. ; Mona, Linda R. ; Lund, Emily M. ; Pilarski, Carrie R. ; Balter, Rochelle. / #SaytheWord : A Disability Culture Commentary on the Erasure of "Disability". In: Rehabilitation Psychology. 2019.
@article{02bbdb7aea2b4ebca0ba4653707b9d7f,
title = "#SaytheWord: A Disability Culture Commentary on the Erasure of {"}Disability{"}",
abstract = "Purpose: To inform the field of rehabilitation psychology about the sociocultural implications of the term {"}disability,{"} and explain the rationale behind the #SaytheWord movement, a social media call to embrace disability identity. Method: Review of the literature on disability terminology, the history of language use, and the relationship between attitudes toward disability and language. We reflect on the role of disability within the field of psychology and within the American Psychological Association (APA), including the underrepresentation of disabled psychologists and trainees with disabilities and the lack of mentorship opportunities available in the field. Implications: The authors argue that erasure of the word {"}disability{"} can have unintended and adverse consequences. We describe how erasure of disability identity in the context of current sociopolitical efforts to reduce and eliminate public services and supports for people with disabilities is especially threatening to members of the disability community. To move forward, the authors postulate that the disability movement must reconcile its own history of exclusion and adopt a disability justice framework. Conclusion: The field of psychology has a rich tradition of appreciation of cultural diversity and individual difference; yet, disability has largely been left out of these efforts. The disability movement is moving toward the status of a diverse cultural group with a social justice agenda parallel to those of other marginalized communities. The authors posit that psychology must play a stronger role in advancing the human rights of people with disabilities.",
keywords = "Attitudes, Culture, Disability, Disability identity, Language",
author = "Erin Andrews and Forber-Pratt, {Anjali J.} and Mona, {Linda R.} and Lund, {Emily M.} and Pilarski, {Carrie R.} and Rochelle Balter",
year = "2019",
month = "1",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1037/rep0000258",
language = "English (US)",
journal = "Rehabilitation Psychology",
issn = "0090-5550",
publisher = "American Psychological Association Inc.",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - #SaytheWord

T2 - A Disability Culture Commentary on the Erasure of "Disability"

AU - Andrews, Erin

AU - Forber-Pratt, Anjali J.

AU - Mona, Linda R.

AU - Lund, Emily M.

AU - Pilarski, Carrie R.

AU - Balter, Rochelle

PY - 2019/1/1

Y1 - 2019/1/1

N2 - Purpose: To inform the field of rehabilitation psychology about the sociocultural implications of the term "disability," and explain the rationale behind the #SaytheWord movement, a social media call to embrace disability identity. Method: Review of the literature on disability terminology, the history of language use, and the relationship between attitudes toward disability and language. We reflect on the role of disability within the field of psychology and within the American Psychological Association (APA), including the underrepresentation of disabled psychologists and trainees with disabilities and the lack of mentorship opportunities available in the field. Implications: The authors argue that erasure of the word "disability" can have unintended and adverse consequences. We describe how erasure of disability identity in the context of current sociopolitical efforts to reduce and eliminate public services and supports for people with disabilities is especially threatening to members of the disability community. To move forward, the authors postulate that the disability movement must reconcile its own history of exclusion and adopt a disability justice framework. Conclusion: The field of psychology has a rich tradition of appreciation of cultural diversity and individual difference; yet, disability has largely been left out of these efforts. The disability movement is moving toward the status of a diverse cultural group with a social justice agenda parallel to those of other marginalized communities. The authors posit that psychology must play a stronger role in advancing the human rights of people with disabilities.

AB - Purpose: To inform the field of rehabilitation psychology about the sociocultural implications of the term "disability," and explain the rationale behind the #SaytheWord movement, a social media call to embrace disability identity. Method: Review of the literature on disability terminology, the history of language use, and the relationship between attitudes toward disability and language. We reflect on the role of disability within the field of psychology and within the American Psychological Association (APA), including the underrepresentation of disabled psychologists and trainees with disabilities and the lack of mentorship opportunities available in the field. Implications: The authors argue that erasure of the word "disability" can have unintended and adverse consequences. We describe how erasure of disability identity in the context of current sociopolitical efforts to reduce and eliminate public services and supports for people with disabilities is especially threatening to members of the disability community. To move forward, the authors postulate that the disability movement must reconcile its own history of exclusion and adopt a disability justice framework. Conclusion: The field of psychology has a rich tradition of appreciation of cultural diversity and individual difference; yet, disability has largely been left out of these efforts. The disability movement is moving toward the status of a diverse cultural group with a social justice agenda parallel to those of other marginalized communities. The authors posit that psychology must play a stronger role in advancing the human rights of people with disabilities.

KW - Attitudes

KW - Culture

KW - Disability

KW - Disability identity

KW - Language

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85061491711&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85061491711&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1037/rep0000258

DO - 10.1037/rep0000258

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:85061491711

JO - Rehabilitation Psychology

JF - Rehabilitation Psychology

SN - 0090-5550

ER -