Make (a) Way

Listen 49:46

For a long time disability meant one thing — limitations. Think about the word disabled: its literal meaning is broken, not functioning. In a world largely built by and for those considered typical, people with disabilities are often boxed out — from jobs they want, places they want to go and activities they could love. But that’s changing as advances in science and technology collide with evolving conceptions of disability. On this week’s show, we explore the idea that “disability” resides not in people, but in the systems, schools, workplaces and communities that don’t make a way for inclusion and participation.

To read a transcript of this week’s episode, click here.

Also on this week’s show:

  • Inside a growing movement to change a culture of medicine that sidelines disabled doctors, and could even hobble patient care.
  • Teresa Blankmeyer Burke is a deaf philosophy professor whose work probes how we define disability – and when it’s really just difference.
  • Introducing computer scientist Brian Smith, whose big idea could be bringing mainstream video games to blind players.
  • A chat with Mariette Bates, the head of CUNY’s Disability Studies program, about embracing disability as identity, and what that means for language.
  • Pianist Andrea Avery’s life changed when she developed rheumatoid arthritis – she describes her journey navigating the gray space between health and disability.
  • In a story from the podcast Exited, we follow a young man who says he’s ready for a job, while those around him say his developmental disabilities are sure to get in the way.

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