“Interview with Sins Invalid on Disability Justice Theory & Praxis”
- What is disability activism? Disability justice? Where are the overlaps? How do they compliment each other?
2. How does the Sins Invalid collaboration with other organizations increase visibility of the disabled community and strengthen the Disability Justice movement, as well as the other social justice movements?
3. What are the differences between how the Disability Rights movement and Disability Justice place disability in the framework of social justice? Are the end results of this placement the same, even though the means is different?
4. In what ways does the Making Connections project allow for increased access into Disability Justice? Does it rely on prior experience with activism, or a developed knowledge of disability theory as a prerequisite for engagement, or does it open up space for the wider community to participate?
5. What is the significance of the performativity of disability in Sins Invalid in shifting the debate to favor the subject of the gaze rather than the gaze itself? How does this taking back of the gaze shift the conversation of disability and start to break down the stigma behind it?
6. A lot of the discussion of Sins Invalid revolves around disability as it is visibly and physically embodied. What does it do with the pathologization of mental illness? Thinking through this quote from the interview may be helpful: “For me, I’m interested in applying concepts of disability justice directly to mental health and politicizing it directly. People are slower to politicize mental health issues, for whatever reason, than other things. It’s helpful for to say we deal with different things, but at the same time there’s a solidarity around disability and crip-ness. We deal with access issues and we’re marginalized in different ways and our other identities also contribute to that marginalization.”
7. “I feel like identifying as disabled is similar to being gay or lesbian or LGB. It essentially still relies on a medicalizing framework. Crip describes more of the politics and the culture where a lived experience of disability is centered. I feel like the way Sins crips things out is crip-centered but there’s also a strong push against gender conformity, there’s a strong push against heteronormativity, we talk a lot about brown queer crip reality and centering us.”
What connections are they drawing between the LGBT movement and disability activism? How is this similar and different from the politicized ties between Queer activism and Crip activism? How are Crip and Disabled similar and different, how do they inform each other?
“Changing the Framework: Disability Justice: How Our Communities Can Move Beyond Access to Wholeness”
- How does Mingus frame the discussion of interdependency? What does she mean when she says “interdependency?” Why is this notion of interdependency versus independency so central to disability justice? Is an independent disability justice system possible?
2. How does she envision moving towards a justice-driven accessibility? What do you personally think that would look like?
3. What is the problem with focusing on access alone?
4. Mingus calls for a moving away from an equality based model to a model that embraces difference, confronts privilege, and challenges what is considered normal. In what ways does this exemplify the differences between disability activism and radical disability justice?
5. Disability justice activists are engaged in building an understanding of disability that is more complex, whole and interconnected than what we have previously found. What is the Myth of Independence and how does Mingus confront it? How does disability activism for accessibility promote this myth of independence? How does disability justice activism challenge it?
6. How does the conversation about finding homes relate to texts we have read earlier in the year, especially Eli Clare’s work? Do the two share similar views on finding home? What different kinds of home can we have? What is a political home in Mingus’ mind?
7. How has the disability rights movement carried out conversations of disability in the past? Why is it that disability is so often left out of the conversation of intersectionality of things like racial justice, queer liberation, reproductive justice and other feminist movements?
“Accessible Futures, Future Coalitions”
1. Kafer asks “…what can disability studies and disability movements learn from our own exclusions?” What can disability activism learn from the exclusion of the disabled community from the able-bodied community? What about from the exclusion of disability activism from other forms of social justice activism? Does disability activism exclude other activisms as well? What can we learn from these exclusions and inclusions?
2. What is the role of gendered bathrooms in upholding notions of gender conformity and ableism? What is the role of non-gendered/accessible restrooms in disturbing these notions? Should there be gendered and accessible restrooms?
3. Harvey Molotch is quoted, questioning inclusion vs. exclusion. “Should disabled people demand to be part of the convention [of gender segregated bathrooms]? Or should they be leaders of the movement to combat it?” How can we connect this to other kinds of intersectional solidarity?
4. Kafer then asks, “Who is included or excluded from our political imaginaries? How are ‘disability’ and ‘disabled person’ (or ‘woman’ and ‘queer’ or ‘race’ or….) being defined in these dreams of the future? Who has access to these imaginaries, and how is access being described?” How does this relate to our previous discussion of crip and queer futurities?