Course Description: In the course Representing Disability, students will be introduced to the field of critical disability studies and its scholarly connection to intersectional feminist research. As an introduction to the field, students will be given the language to discuss disability (in all of its complex embodiments) and critically analyze the ways in which disability has been represented and/or misrepresented in popular media, art and visual culture, advertisement, medicine, museums, fashion, and politics. Through a number of different artistic and visual culture examples, we will discuss historical and contemporary representations of disability – both visible and invisible. We will look at activist movements that address inequality as it relates to physical, cognitive, neuro, and mental diversity, as well as socio-economic factors and other social determinates of access and health. A variety of representational forms will be discussed, such as film, sculpture, painting, performance, memoir, photography, and students will be given the opportunity to produce a small scale creative activist project. From this course, students will acquire a larger understanding of critical disability studies as an academic field and will be given the tools to actively and creatively approach social justice activism in their own lives.
No background or knowledge in disability studies required, this course is open to all types of online learners!