Exploring normativity in disability studies

Vehmas, S. and Watson, N. (2016) Exploring normativity in disability studies. Disability and Society, 31(1), pp. 1-16. (doi: 10.1080/09687599.2015.1120657)

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Normativity is a concept that is often misapplied in disability studies, especially in ‘postconventional’ accounts, where the concept is conflated with ‘normal’, ‘normate’, or ‘standard’. This article addresses this confusion, explores the meaning and use of ‘normativity’, and presents some analytic tools to discuss normative issues of right and wrong. The article finishes by discussing examples where conceptual confusions result in confused normative judgments focusing in particular on agency, responsibility and moral status. The article argues that disability research should carefully consider the use of theories and empirical knowledge in the light of their ethical implications as well as the lived experiences of disability.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:This work was supported by Kulttuurin ja Yhteiskunnan Tutkimuksen Toimikunta [grant number SA275988].
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Watson, Professor Nicholas
Authors: Vehmas, S., and Watson, N.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > Social Scientists working in Health and Wellbeing
College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Sociology Anthropology and Applied Social Sciences
Journal Name:Disability and Society
ISSN (Online):1360-0508
Published Online:08 January 2016

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