From critical disability studies to critical global disability studies

Authored by: Shaun Grech

Handbook of Critical Psychology

Print publication date:  April  2015
Online publication date:  April  2015

Print ISBN: 9781848722187
eBook ISBN: 9781315726526
Adobe ISBN: 9781317537182


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Critical psychologists need to know this: amidst the flurry of (often haphazard) estimates and assuming/monolithic discourse, there remains an urgency, to pay attention to the lives of disabled people living in the global South. In its first World Report on Disability published in 2011 (in conjunction with the World Bank), the WHO suggests that some estimated 15 per cent of the global population is disabled people. It also went on to restate that around 80 per cent of these disabled people are located in the so-called global South. Attention towards disability in the global South, though, is relatively recent in both practice and academia, dating back to the 1990s, when a few linkages started to be created with the industry of international development. Indeed, many have echoed the notion that disability and poverty are caught in a mutually reinforcing relationship, whereby poverty exacerbates and/or intensifies disability (or rather impairment), and impairment leads to or strengthens poverty, the net result being that disabled people and their families are among the poorest of the poor (see Groce et al. 2012).

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