University Calendar

Critical Disability Studies Brown Bag Lunch: Danielle Cowley

Date: Thursday, February 27, 2014
Time: 12:00 PM
- 01:00 PM

Location: 135 Humanities


Sponsor: Paul K. Longmore Institute on Disability

Contact: Emily Beitiks

Phone: (415) 405-3528

"Occupying the Borderlands: Negotiating the Liminal Spaces of Dis/Ability and Adolescent Girlhood." This study is a starting point about how constructions of girl/womanhood may contribute to gender inequities experienced by adolescent girls with dis/abilities. Through qualitative methods with four adolescent girls with dis/abilities and evoking Anzaldua's (1987) concept of the borderlands, findings indicate the young women negotiated experiences along the continuum of girl/womanhood: friendships and social activities, sexuality, and transgressive femininity. At other times mothers' protective discourses and the culture of special education produced more limited spaces for them to occupy. Implications will be discussed including re-thinking the final or extra years of schooling offered to students with dis/abilities, paying attention to ableist and sexist schooling practices, comprehensive and non-discriminatory sex education, and opportunities to engage in age-appropriate curriculum and social activities.


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