The chapters PJ McGann and David J. Hutson have assembled for this volume are not only timely, coinciding with the appearance of DSM-V, but mark a defining moment in which a new subfield of medical sociology has emerged. Diagnosis, which refers both to diagnostic categories and the process of creating and applying them, is a central feature (Blaxter, 1978) – if not the central feature of medical work. Annemarie Jutel, who has done much to build the sociology of diagnosis, has described the wide array of “work” diagnosis performs in the medical world:Diagnosis is integral to medicine and the way it creates social order. It organizes illness: identifying treatment options, predicting outcomes, and providing an explanatory framework. Diagnosis also serves an administrative purpose as it enables access to services and status, from insurance reimbursement to restricted-access medication, sick leave and support group membership and so on… (Jutel, 2009, p. 278)
This paper was written to show that what has come to be called the social model of disability appeared as the primary analytical framework in research published by…
This paper was written to show that what has come to be called the social model of disability appeared as the primary analytical framework in research published by sociologists in the 1960s and 1970s. Although the name and constructs of the model have changed over the years, its roots are clearly present in the earlier sociological literature. The author looked for evidence of these roots.
The paper’s findings are based on a literature review and synthesis. For illustrative purposes, four publications were selected as case examples.
All of the components of the social model – locus of the problem in society, activism as a solution, and consumer control – appeared in the earlier literature. In addition, these studies conducted in the 1970s and earlier distinguished between the individual and social model, although they used different terminology.
Researchers need to go beyond simple electronic literature searches in order to find books and articles written prior to 1980. Otherwise, they may be “reinventing the wheel.”
Most recent literature in disability studies acknowledges a debt to the social model theorists of the 1990s. This paper suggests that their debt extends back much further and that the social model is part of a long tradition of sociological thinking.
Let us return to Nancy Cruzan's story. Hopeful that Nancy would eventually recover, her parents, Lester and Joyce Cruzan, agreed to have doctors insert a feeding tube to deliver artificial hydration and nutrition – a decision they would one day regret. Although the Cruzans visited frequently, Nancy was unable to respond to their attention. After four years had elapsed, the Cruzans concluded that Nancy would never regain consciousness and should be allowed to die.
Although the particular policies that groups establish may serve to differentiate those groups from others in the broader community, policies are better envisioned as…
Although the particular policies that groups establish may serve to differentiate those groups from others in the broader community, policies are better envisioned as aspects of group life in the making than as structures or rules that define the character or operations of the groups under consideration. Addressing instances of policy as humanly engaged ventures, this statement attempts to demystify policy by (a) examining organizational directives in process terms, (b) explicitly incorporating people into the study of the policy‐making process. This paper also addresses policy in ways that (c) are more amenable to ethnographic research on actual instances of policy and (d) contribute to a sustained, comparative analysis of “policy in the making”.
Purpose: Researchers and advocates alike have noted that persons with disabilities and older persons are the two groups most marginalized by neoliberal economic policies…
Purpose: Researchers and advocates alike have noted that persons with disabilities and older persons are the two groups most marginalized by neoliberal economic policies and therefore could come together as a broad-based movement against the roll back of their rights. Yet, these two groups fail to collaborate, and instead compete against one another for an ever-shrinking pool of benefits. This chapter explores the barriers to their collaboration within the context of structural adjustment in Jamaica.
Methods/Approach: The author engages in a critical analysis of neoliberalism's effect on the advocacy strategies of the disability and older persons' movements in Jamaica based on 32 semi-directed depth interviews, participant observation of numerous events, and a survey of media written by local advocates.
Findings: The disability movement makes claims on behalf of their members by focusing on the potential returns that society will gain by providing the opportunities that will make young persons with disabilities productive employees over their lifetime. The older persons' movement advocates by portraying themselves as “vibrant” and worthy of social investment because of the contributions they make. Both of these arguments for inclusion are also exclusionary. The disability movement excludes older persons as potential contributors and the older persons' movement similarly excludes persons with disabilities.
Implications: The only way neoliberalism will successfully be rolled back and universal rights returned is if the disability movement and older persons' movements build an alliance that is more inclusive, including of one another, by rejecting the language of investment and productivity, and instead focus on rights and inherent dignity.
This chapter examines the everyday experiences of short women, focusing on the problems they face and the coping strategies used to navigate being short in a heightist…
This chapter examines the everyday experiences of short women, focusing on the problems they face and the coping strategies used to navigate being short in a heightist society. Further, this chapter views height as a stigmatized identity, which both negatively and positively impacts short women.
Sixteen qualitative interviews were conducted with women 5′2″ and under.
Using the literature on stress, and coping models laid out by social psychologists, this chapter elucidates the unique place of short women in American society.
While there has been a wealth of literature on how short stature impacts men, research on how short stature impacts women has been scant.