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Welfare Reform on the Web (September 2009): Services for the disabled - overseas

Resistance, transformation and the politics of hope: imagining a way forward for the disabled people's movement

S. Peters, S. Gabel and S. Symeonidou

Disability and Society, vol. 24, 2009, p. 543-556

The social model of disability has been a useful tool to shift the focus from disability as an individual deficit to disability as a social construction in an oppressive society. However, a theory of political action is needed to create transformative change. This article develops resistance as a unifying political construct and tool for action. It presents four critical examples of resistance from different historical eras and different regions (India, the USA, Cyprus and Zimbabwe), showing how it can be harnessed by disabled individuals and the disabled people's movement to create and sustain social change.

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