Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.

1 Linking Lives & Times: Connecting Biography, Disability & History Sonali Shah & Mark Priestley Centre for Disability Studies

Similar presentations


Presentation on theme: "1 Linking Lives & Times: Connecting Biography, Disability & History Sonali Shah & Mark Priestley Centre for Disability Studies"— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Linking Lives & Times: Connecting Biography, Disability & History Sonali Shah & Mark Priestley Centre for Disability Studies

2 2 Themes Project Overview Project Overview Key Questions Key Questions Theoretical Framework Theoretical Framework Case Studies Case Studies –Family Life; Education Concepts & Conclusions Concepts & Conclusions Has Life Changed for Disabled People in Post War Britain? Has Life Changed for Disabled People in Post War Britain?

3 3 Project Overview Part of 3 year Nuffield Foundation fellowship Part of 3 year Nuffield Foundation fellowship Life story interviews with 50 physically disabled people, living in England, born in the 1940s, the 1960s, and the 1980s. Life story interviews with 50 physically disabled people, living in England, born in the 1940s, the 1960s, and the 1980s. Explore actual change in disabling societies via empirical life histories from different generations. Explore actual change in disabling societies via empirical life histories from different generations.

4 4 Key research questions Has life changed for disabled people since WWII? Has life changed for disabled people since WWII? What are the resources that make a difference in disabled people’s lives? Have they changed over time? What are the resources that make a difference in disabled people’s lives? Have they changed over time? To what extent has social policy made a difference to the experiences of disabled people? To what extent has social policy made a difference to the experiences of disabled people?

5 5 Theme: Education & family life How has segregated educational provision affected disabled children’s family lives and relationships since the 1940s? How has segregated educational provision affected disabled children’s family lives and relationships since the 1940s? –Make links between public and private/ macro and micro –Connecting policy analysis with qualitative life history data –Interplay between personal agency and social structure

6 6 Some public policies Family: Family: –Increasing support for families of disabled children (Whizz Kidz; Aiming high) –1993 Standard Rules on the Equalization of Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities –United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities 2008 Education Education –Warnock Report 1978; Education Act 1981; SENDA 2001; DDA 2005

7 7 Method & Sample Generation 1: born post-war and completed secondary education before 1970 Generation 1: born post-war and completed secondary education before 1970 Generation 2: started school before 1970 and completed secondary education after 1981 Act Generation 2: started school before 1970 and completed secondary education after 1981 Act Generation 3: started school after 1981 Act and completed secondary education after DDA Generation 3: started school after 1981 Act and completed secondary education after DDA

8 8 Experiences of Mainstream Experiences of Mainstream I mean, obviously my disability was noticeable, so you’d get kids calling you names, you know, but once they realised that, you know, that you would join in football and everything else, like anybody else, I think nobody then bothered at all. (Dan, 1940/50s) ‘It [bulling] wasn’t constant, it wasn’t really malicious either. It was just somebody needed a target and I was the easiest one, so, I don’t know. It was, it was traumatic at the time’ (Steve, 1980/ 90.)

9 9 Level of Choice it was suggested by the medical profession that I should go to a special school…and people like doctors and that were very, in a very authoritative position, people thought that they knew best. (Dan, 1940s) I think me mum looked at specialist, because she didn’t realise mainstream was an option… it was practically unheard of then I suppose to have disabled kids in mainstream school… she [mum] spoke to a few other parents of children around my age who were looking at the possibility of sending their kids to mainstream school (Steve, 1980s) my mother started to fight the entrenched values of the education system to enable me to go into mainstream education (Harvey, 1980s)

10 10 In hospital away from family In hospital away from family [THEN – 1940s] I remember going up to London, because I was in Hospital in London, we lived in Kent at the time, quite a long way from the major London hospitals. I don’t know why my parents wanted me to go to a London Hospital but I can only think that maybe the regional ones weren’t yet NHS…I was four years old I think and I didn’t understand anything that was happening… [my parents] just kind of left me there and it was just absolutely devastating to be left in this huge hospital with these strangers…I think my parents came every other weekend ‘cos they didn’t have a car or anything like that to start off with, so they came up on the steam train. … [NOW – 21 st Century] Now parents are able to go into hospital, or at least one of the parents is able to go into hospital with them, and stay with them. So there’s a constant continuity of parental support. And nowadays people would be very supportive of the child, but in those days they weren’t at all.

11 11 In School away from family In School away from family The education of disabled children going up to the 1960s was actually controlled by the health service and not by education, so they had quite a large say in where disabled children went, and they felt it was best to send me away to a special school, for my mum and for me (Bob, 1950s) I got left at this school when I was four years old… I was crying my eyes out ‘cos my mum and dad had left me… (Tan, 1960s) I was a Monday to Friday boarder because the orthopaedic surgeon at the time wasn’t thrilled with the thought of me travelling from here to there twice a day…(Ian, 1960s)

12 12 Impact of childhood separation on family Impact of childhood separation on family I mean my sister never wanted to play with me, if she did play with me, if one of her friends called I would be dropped like a ton of brick…There was always that kind of rivalry there…I found her very rejecting (Daisy, 1940s) I never really kind of saw my parents as my parents ‘cos I didn’t know who they were. Do you know what I mean? They were just people who used to come and see me (Tan, 1960s)

13 13 Separation from local peers: Separation from local peers: …with mainstream schools you’re within a catchment area and so you live near your friends. The school I went to, because it was special needs school, it really wasn’t like that. People came from all over the place…when I got home I was at home and there was nothing for me outside of home. (Holly, 1980s) …my sisters went to infant and junior school at local schools, they knew a lot of local people as a result. With me, because I went to this school which was a little distance away I missed out on that sort of thing a lot. That’s why I’m a firm believer that schools shouldn’t be segregated…(Ant, 1960s) I didn’t know anyone, I had no local friends … I didn’t really want to go home because what was there? (Bob, 1950s)

14 14 Turning Points: Agency vs structure Turning Points: Agency vs structure [the secondary school], which is two three miles away, has stairs. The school wanted me to go to a special school. And my mum put her foot down and said ‘no way, she will go to the school’. Cos we had stairs, and even with one calliper I could get up and down the stairs and erm, so I went to the ordinary school… (Maggie, 1940s) I was very, very lucky because the only reason I left my special school was that the teacher who had been assigned to my class and had the most to do with me throughout my time at my special school, saw that I had the potential and the ability to survive in a mainstream environment. So she took her free periods off when she wasn’t teaching. She took me to the local primary school and made sure that I did maths and science along with kids at the local primary school. But she fought against the rest of the school and to some extent the apathy of my parents to get me out of the school. (Helen, 1980s)

15 15 Theoretical Framework Personal biographies are windows to social, cultural and policy change in Britain (C Wright Mills, Sociological Imagination) Personal biographies are windows to social, cultural and policy change in Britain (C Wright Mills, Sociological Imagination) Connect structure/ agency, individual/ social Connect structure/ agency, individual/ social a social model approach - disabled people are not the subject matter of disability studies (Finkelstein 2001) a social model approach - disabled people are not the subject matter of disability studies (Finkelstein 2001) critical realism – disability is real (social relations, institutions and barriers) critical realism – disability is real (social relations, institutions and barriers)

16 16 Barriers Relationships Institutions Disability Life ‘Real’‘Actual’‘Empirical’ Our Research

17 17 Temporal realities – change over time Policies & institutions come & go (1944 Education Act) Policies & institutions come & go (1944 Education Act) Disabling barriers created & removed (designated employment/ sheltered workshops) Disabling barriers created & removed (designated employment/ sheltered workshops) Relationships transform Relationships transform Narrative accounts of disabling barriers are temporally situated  changing societies Narrative accounts of disabling barriers are temporally situated  changing societies

18 18 Generatio n 1 Total = 12 (M: 1; F: 11) Born in 1940s/ grew up 1950s (now ages ) 1942: Beverage Report 1943: Second World War 1944 Education Act 1946 National Health Service Act 1948 National Assistance Act 1950s: Steel lightweight wheelchairs Generatio n 2 Total = 20 (M: 5; F: 15 Born in 1960s/ grew up 1970s (now ages ) 1962: Declaration for the Rights of Disabled Persons 1970: Local Authority Social Services Act 1970 Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act 1976: Disabled People’s Movement 1978: Warnock Report 1978/9: Independent Living Generatio n 3 Total = 11 (M: 4; F: 7) Born in 1980s/ grew up 1990s (now ages ) 1981: International year of disabled people 1981 Education Act 1990: Community Care Act 1995/ 2005: DDA 2001: SENDA

19 19 Concept of Time Chronological time - e.g. a law changed in 1995 or the economy changed in 1973 Chronological time - e.g. a law changed in 1995 or the economy changed in 1973 Biographical time - e.g. things that happened in childhood, adulthood, (“when I was 18”) Biographical time - e.g. things that happened in childhood, adulthood, (“when I was 18”) Generational and historical time - important to remember that life has been 'different' for different generations of young disabled people. Generational and historical time - important to remember that life has been 'different' for different generations of young disabled people.

20 20 Some conclusions in our research real disabling barriers can only be understood and observed through disabled people’s empirical realities real disabling barriers can only be understood and observed through disabled people’s empirical realities experiences of disability do differ and impacts the life course at different points in time experiences of disability do differ and impacts the life course at different points in time institutions, environmental barriers, and human relationships are important factors that shape people's lives or careers institutions, environmental barriers, and human relationships are important factors that shape people's lives or careers

21 21 Has life changed for disabled people in post-war Britain? Thoughts & Questions


Download ppt "1 Linking Lives & Times: Connecting Biography, Disability & History Sonali Shah & Mark Priestley Centre for Disability Studies"

Similar presentations


Ads by Google