Then Barbara Met Alan

I just came across some very interesting news indeed. Outside of the disability community, I doubt many people know what DAN stands for. I doubt many realise why it was established, or what it achieved. However, the 2022 television drama detailed here looks like it might change that. “Then Barbara Met Alan tells the story through the eyes of Barbara Lisicki (Ruth Madeley) and Alan Holdsworth (newcomer Arthur Hughes), two disabled cabaret performers who met at a gig in 1989 and would go on to become the driving force behind DAN – the Direct Action Network, whose fearless and coordinated protests pushed the campaign for disabled rights into the spotlight.”

If what I’ve seen so far – very little, admittedly – is anything to go by, this program stands to be utterly groundbreaking. The Disability Rights Movement and it’s history has been near enough totally ignored by the mainstream. If Then Barbara Met Alan can shed a little light on it, it could very well be a total paradigm shift. Alongside films like Crip Camp, it stands to shed light on a civil rights movement not many people outside the crip community realise even took place, and in doing so carries the aims of the movement even further. I really can’t wait to see this program.

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