Chris’ tale of two narratives

I really think I should flag this quite excellent piece by my old friend Chris Whittaker up. In it, Chris looks at the two contrasting ways to represent disabled people in the media – that of the scrounger and that of the valiant hero – and draws some fairly interesting conclusions. As he points out the increasing portrayal of people with disabilities as burdens on society has lead to a worrying resurgence in medical model thinking: it is not society which imposes barriers upon us, but, trapped in our abnormal bodies, all we can do is beg for scraps off society’s table. Thus, as Chris says, ” The case for the ‘contribution’ based narrative [which frames people with disabilities as having a positive effect on society] should also continue to be made in an assertive way.” That is precisely what I seek to do in my writing and film making.

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