Disability Visibility
A groundbreaking collection of first-person writing on the joys and challenges of the modern disability experience: Disability Visibility brings together the voices of activists, authors, lawyers, politicians, artists, and everyday people whose daily lives are, in the words of playwright Neil Marcus, “an art…an ingenious way to live.” A Vintage Books Original.According to the last census, one in five people in the United States lives with a disability. Some are visible, some are hidden—but all are underrepresented in media and popular culture. Now, just in time for the thirtieth anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, activist Alice Wong brings together an urgent, galvanizing collection of personal essays by contemporary disabled writers. There is Harriet McBryde Johnson’s “Unspeakable Conversations,” which describes her famous debate with Princeton philosopher Peter Singer over her own personhood. There is columnist s. e. smith’s celebratory review of a work of theater by disabled performers. There are original pieces by up-and-coming authors like Keah Brown and Haben Girma. There are blog posts, manifestos, eulogies, and testimonies to Congress. Taken together, this anthology gives a glimpse of the vast richness and complexity of the disabled experience, highlighting the passions, talents, and everyday lives of this community. It invites readers to question their own assumptions and understandings. It celebrates and documents disability culture in the now. It looks to the future and past with hope and love.

Disability Visibility Details

TitleDisability Visibility
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJun 30th, 2020
PublisherVintage
Rating
GenreNonfiction, Disability, Writing, Essays, Autobiography, Memoir, Disability Studies, Social Movements, Social Justice, Anthologies, Politics, Adult, Short Stories

Disability Visibility Review

  • The Artisan Geek
    January 1, 1970
    1/7/20I have been looking for exactly this kind of book and it came in the mail today -- so so happy to have it!! :DYou can find me onYoutube | Instagram | Twitter | Tumblr | Website | The Storygraph 1/7/20I have been looking for exactly this kind of book and it came in the mail today -- so so happy to have it!! :DYou can find me onYoutube | Instagram | Twitter | Tumblr | Website | The Storygraph
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  • Richard Propes
    January 1, 1970
    In a world where the disabled voice is often viewed through the lens of what disability rights activist Stella Young coined as "inspiration porn" or with the rah-rah sympathies of the latest Lifetime Channel movie, a book like "Disability Visibility: First-Person Stories from the Twenty-First Century" is an act of revolutionary love and claiming of space. There is no "Chicken Soup for the Soul" to be found here. In its place, you find #CripLit at its finest - bold and brash, heartfelt and passio In a world where the disabled voice is often viewed through the lens of what disability rights activist Stella Young coined as "inspiration porn" or with the rah-rah sympathies of the latest Lifetime Channel movie, a book like "Disability Visibility: First-Person Stories from the Twenty-First Century" is an act of revolutionary love and claiming of space. There is no "Chicken Soup for the Soul" to be found here. In its place, you find #CripLit at its finest - bold and brash, heartfelt and passionate, and incredibly well-informed essays and reflections on the vast diversity of the disability experience as told by a relatively small smattering of the leading disability voices in the 21st century. Trust me, there are more. Lots more. However, "Disability Visibility" editor Alice Wong has chosen her subjects well in representing the remarkable love and chaos of the disability experience. The writers themselves, representing a broad spectrum of disabilities both visible and invisible, have written with tremendous authenticity, remarkable transparency, and a vulnerability that frequently had me in tears throughout this rewarding collection. Being released just in time for the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), "Disability Visibility" doesn't mute the harshness of the disability experience. Indeed, many of the essays in the collection begin with content warnings regarding the subject matter about to be discussed - "Disability Visibility" is relentless and fierce in its commitment to an honest portrayal of the disability experience. It begins with Wong's own introduction to the collection, an introduction birthed out of Wong's own life experiences and her own work with the Disability Visibility Project, a collaboration with StoryCorps, that serves as the framework for this collection. It would be unjust to describe the essays in "Disability Visibility" with any detail, though some highlights include Harriet McBryde Johnson's riveting and squirm-inducing account of her debate with Princeton University philosopher Peter Singer, an animal rights activist who doesn't possess the same kind of regard for the lives of persons with disabilities. Upcoming authors Keah Brown and Haben Girma share involving original pieces, while some of my own favorites included s.e. smith's essays on crip space, Jamison Hill's poignant and beautiful "Love Means Never Having to Say...Anything," Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha's "Still Dreaming Wild Disability Justice Dreams at the End of the World," the intelligent and angry Harriet Tubman Collective's "Disability Solidarity," Britney Wilson's disturbing essay on NYC's Paratransit program, and Mari Ramsawakh's "Incontinence Is a Public Health Issue And We Need To Talk About It," the latter being an essay that truly connected with pieces of my own disability experience as a 54-year-old writer, creator, and film journalist who is also a paraplegic/double amputee with spina bifida. There were more essays that I loved, truly loved. There were essays that flew over my head including Jillian Weise's "Common Cyborg." I felt like I wanted to find Wong or Weise on social media and say "Explain this to me, because I have the feeling it's brilliant and I just don't quite get it." The truth is that I'd be hard-pressed to cite a single weak essay. These essays are revolutionary proclamations of the incredible richness and complexity of the disability experience. While there is much pain and anger within the pages of "Disability Visibility," it is also filled with much love and hope and wonder. As Neil Marcus so beautifully stated "Disability is not a brave struggle or "courage in the face of adversity." Disability is an art. It's an ingenious way to live." That truth, that disability is an ingenious way to live, is brought to life again and again in this groundbreaking collection of first-person stories from the twenty-first century that challenge and confront, claim space and serve as a literary companion of sorts. There's so many enlightening truths to be explored here, truths that will be easily embraced and understood by those with disabilities and their allies yet truths that also invite readers to challenge their own assumptions and understandings of the disability experience and disability culture. "Disability Visibility" is a book that illuminates the disability experience with equal parts intelligence and authentic emotional resonance. It's a book that is, at times, difficult to read yet a book that is necessary to read. It's a book I will undoubtedly revisit time and again, yet it's also a book that required I pace myself due to its stark honesty and and the often trauma-tinged stories of individual disability experiences. It's a book that captures it all and for that I am grateful and for that I highly recommend it.
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  • Kelly
    January 1, 1970
    This year marks the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. You may or may not know that 1 out of every 5 Americans is disabled, whether visible or not, and that number is even more startling for Black Americans, wherein 1 in every 4 are disabled. This collection, expertly curated and edited by disability activist Alice Wong, is not only timely, but it’s a vital anthology for readers -- abled and disabled -- to understand the realities of disability and disability justice today. This year marks the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. You may or may not know that 1 out of every 5 Americans is disabled, whether visible or not, and that number is even more startling for Black Americans, wherein 1 in every 4 are disabled. This collection, expertly curated and edited by disability activist Alice Wong, is not only timely, but it’s a vital anthology for readers -- abled and disabled -- to understand the realities of disability and disability justice today. Broken into four sections -- Being, Becoming, Doing, and Connecting -- each of the essays digs into something related to the theme at hand and each piece is tightly written by a wide range of contributors. Some of the names will be familiar, while others will be new names, but there’s not a single weak essay in the collection. Among the ones that really stood out to me included “The Isolation of Being Deaf in Prison,” wherein Jeremy Woody tells his experiences being Deaf behind bars to Christie Thomas. It’s something I’ve never thought about, despite my own interest with prison justice. In the Becoming section, Haben Girma’s piece on how guide dogs aren’t leading Blind people but instead are being led by them really made me pause. I had an incredible opportunity last year to spend time with Dr. Kathie Schneider, who founded and funds the Schneider Family Book Award for presentation of the disability experience in children’s literature, and she took me to the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire’s campus, wherein there’s a statue of a guide dog -- hers -- and what all it represents for the school and for the study, understanding, and humanity of those with disabilities. Girma’s essay was a reminder of how symbols mean so much more than what a general population might think they mean. This section also had a great piece by Keah Brown about Black Disabled Joy that reminded me how fantastic her writing is. Keshia Scott has a piece in this section, too, about asexuality and how it relates to the disability experience that will mean so much to queer -- especially ace -- readers. Zipporah Arielle wrote a powerful piece about why more celebrities like Selma Blair speaking up and out about disability and living visibly with it could make a tremendous impact for disability justice. Eugene Grant writes about Benjamin Lay, an abolitionist Dwarf, and how much a shame it is that people’s disabilities and bodies don’t take up more space in history books alongside what they did -- Lay’s story and experiences as a Dwarf would have changed so much, given that representation of Dwarfs in pop culture is as a joke or laughter or side kick and never central or hero.s.e. smith’s piece at the end of the book explores what it is to see a performance on stage where literally every performer is disabled, where there are interpreters for the show, and wherein nearly the entire audience is disabled as well -- and what happens when someone who is able-bodied takes the mic in that space. These essays will challenge you, whether or not you’re disabled, and they’ll be reminders of how much work there is still to do in order to make spaces accessible and welcoming to those of all disabilities, visible or not. Moreover, these pieces are a cry to center disabled voices and experiences when it comes to change and reform across all sociopolitical arenas, including in otherwise diverse spaces where disability is still not always part of an organization or movement’s mission. Necessary reading that’s easy to read cover to cover OR, like I did, pick up and put down to really think about what the pieces each said. We don’t have enough books about disability from disabled voices. This is a crucial addition to the small -- but growing -- shelf.
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  • Siria
    January 1, 1970
    Disability Visability is an anthology which brings together a variety of perspectives from disabled people on the 30th anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities Act. Some of the pieces were written specifically for this anthology while others appeared previously in print or online. As with many such collections, this is somewhat of a mixed bag. All of the pieces are clearly written from a place of passion about each author's individual experience of disability. However, some of the writers Disability Visability is an anthology which brings together a variety of perspectives from disabled people on the 30th anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities Act. Some of the pieces were written specifically for this anthology while others appeared previously in print or online. As with many such collections, this is somewhat of a mixed bag. All of the pieces are clearly written from a place of passion about each author's individual experience of disability. However, some of the writers are far stronger than others, and for every stand-out article there are a handful that at minimum needed another draft to reach their full potential. Still a worthwhile read.
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  • Christina || All My Book Clubs Are Dead
    January 1, 1970
    This disability anthology is remarkable in that nearly every essay is an important read. In Wong's introduction she clarifies that this anthology may make you uncomfortable, but it isn't written to ask for your empathy. Instead it seeks to simple present disabled people "being." In all #OwnVoices books, we are able to read about a person's experience, knowing that it does not speak for every person but that it does depict, in truth, that one person's experience. This collection will undoubtedly This disability anthology is remarkable in that nearly every essay is an important read. In Wong's introduction she clarifies that this anthology may make you uncomfortable, but it isn't written to ask for your empathy. Instead it seeks to simple present disabled people "being." In all #OwnVoices books, we are able to read about a person's experience, knowing that it does not speak for every person but that it does depict, in truth, that one person's experience. This collection will undoubtedly allow you to re-think and observe your own ideas about disability, particularly if you are an able-bodied person like myself. I'm grateful for the time and care that went into creating this and compiling such a robust collection of essays..Thanks to NetGalley and Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group for an advanced copy. All opinions are my own.
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  • Michelle
    January 1, 1970
    I really enjoyed this book. I had to start off with that because I think it's important to state that I enjoyed this book and would recommend this to everyone. First the author herself is disabled, which is inspiring because there's not many authors that have disabilities. If there are then I definitely need to find out and read their books. She is also an advocate for people who have disabilities and in this book she shares stories of others and what they do to cope with their disabilities. At I really enjoyed this book. I had to start off with that because I think it's important to state that I enjoyed this book and would recommend this to everyone. First the author herself is disabled, which is inspiring because there's not many authors that have disabilities. If there are then I definitely need to find out and read their books. She is also an advocate for people who have disabilities and in this book she shares stories of others and what they do to cope with their disabilities. At first I thought it was alot like the Chicken Soup For The Soul books but once I got into it I realized that it's not the case. I give this book five stars i would recommend it and possibly reread again. I thank netgalley and the publishers for letting me read this in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Tiffany
    January 1, 1970
    Disability Visibility edited by Alice Wong is a collection of essays relaying personal experiences of disability and how they are still ignored and treated as less than. I learned so many things about the disabled experience in the United States and was often shocked by how far behind other marginalized groups they are in gaining and enforcing rights. For example, a "1927 Supreme Court case ruled that sterilization of people with disabilities is constitutional." This has still not been overturne Disability Visibility edited by Alice Wong is a collection of essays relaying personal experiences of disability and how they are still ignored and treated as less than. I learned so many things about the disabled experience in the United States and was often shocked by how far behind other marginalized groups they are in gaining and enforcing rights. For example, a "1927 Supreme Court case ruled that sterilization of people with disabilities is constitutional." This has still not been overturned and is sometimes even used as an "incentive" toward release from incarceration. Additionally, I learned that while prisons are legally required to provide Deaf prisoners with interpreters for counseling sessions, meetings with their lawyers, and education classes, they often do not.There are many types of disability represented in this collection from Deafness, blindness, wheelchair users, and the chronically ill. Not only that, but there are several essays focusing on the intersection between disability and of LGBT+ communities and ethnic minorities. Some talk about their struggle to accept the label "disabled" as they were previously able-bodied and still have ingrained ableism. Others talk about how they could do more, if only our society gave more allowances and adaptations to help meet them where they are. A few essays gave examples of how these authors are succeeding because of the creative ways they approach problems.These essays were not only illuminating to understand the struggles and conditions disabled people have on a daily basis, but I felt seen as a person who has a chronic illness. The majority of the essays either taught me something or made a deep impression on me. Alice Wong writes in the introduction, "Collectively, through our stories, our connections, and our actions, disabled people will continue to confront and transform the status quo." I feel that's exactly what this essay collection does. I gave this book 4 stars and highly recommend to everyone.This book will be published June 30, 2020. Thank you Netgalley for an advanced copy.
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  • Casey the Reader
    January 1, 1970
    Thanks to Vintage Books for the free advance copy of this book. DISABILITY VISIBILITY is a collection of first-person writings about life as a disabled person in the United States today. It includes essays, speeches, blog posts and more and touches on a wide variety of topics, from the difficulty of finding clothing that works to riding public transit to the fight to be seen as fully human. If you are a non-disabled person looking to learn more about what it's like to move through the world as a Thanks to Vintage Books for the free advance copy of this book. DISABILITY VISIBILITY is a collection of first-person writings about life as a disabled person in the United States today. It includes essays, speeches, blog posts and more and touches on a wide variety of topics, from the difficulty of finding clothing that works to riding public transit to the fight to be seen as fully human. If you are a non-disabled person looking to learn more about what it's like to move through the world as a disabled person, or if you are a disabled person looking to find yourself on the page, I think this book is the book for you. Each essay brought out a new facet of disabled life, and this book brings special attention to people with multiple marginalizations - disabled and queer, disabled and BIPOC, people with multiple disabilities, and much more. DISABILITY VISIBILITY is also easy to read - it's not full of academic terms, it's not written with the intent to shut anyone out of the conversation. It's truly a great resource for anyone, something we need much more of when it comes to the stories of disabled people. Content warnings: Many of the essays have content warnings at the top, and there are a lot of difficult ableism-related things discussed in this book.
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  • Michelle Kidwell
    January 1, 1970
    Disability VisibilityFirst-Person Stories from the Twenty-First Centuryby Alice WongKnopf Doubleday Publishing Group Vintage Biographies & Memoirs Pub Date 30 Jun 2020I am reviewing a copy of Disability Visibility through Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group/ Vintage and Netgalley:One in five People in the United States live with a disability of one form or another. Some are visible, but there are those that we cannot really see too. Simply staying alive as a person with a disability in an ableist s Disability VisibilityFirst-Person Stories from the Twenty-First Centuryby Alice WongKnopf Doubleday Publishing Group Vintage Biographies & Memoirs Pub Date 30 Jun 2020I am reviewing a copy of Disability Visibility through Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group/ Vintage and Netgalley:One in five People in the United States live with a disability of one form or another. Some are visible, but there are those that we cannot really see too. Simply staying alive as a person with a disability in an ableist society can present a challenge. There have been improvements in the last generation, but with a population with up to 20 percent disabled more needs to be done. We live in an era when disabled people are more vibrant and visible than ever before, but that is not enough.Disability Visibility is a collection of Essays, Blog Posts and Manifestos that Alice Wong has compiled just in time for the thirtieth anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act.I give Disability Visibility five out of five stars!Happy Reading!
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  • Katherine
    January 1, 1970
    This diverse collection of essays (from a wonderfully equally diverse group of authors) is fantastic! There is a lot of valuable information here. Additionally, there is a "Further Reading" section at the back of the book with more resources. No matter how much you know (or think you know) on a subject, there is always more to learn. There are so many varied human experiences, that it's important to seek out and be open to lived experiences of people with different experiences than yours or mine This diverse collection of essays (from a wonderfully equally diverse group of authors) is fantastic! There is a lot of valuable information here. Additionally, there is a "Further Reading" section at the back of the book with more resources. No matter how much you know (or think you know) on a subject, there is always more to learn. There are so many varied human experiences, that it's important to seek out and be open to lived experiences of people with different experiences than yours or mine. And seeing your own experiences in writing, and accurately represented, can be empowering.Content warnings are included at the beginning of individual essays. If a subject is triggering for you, you are able to flip past that essay and move on to the next. Definitely pick up a copy - you won't regret it! Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for the ARC! The opinions in this review are honest and my own. #DisabilityVisibility #ownvoices
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  • Elizabeth Herr
    January 1, 1970
    I feel honored to receive an ARC of this book, I was so excited to get approved for it. There are just not enough writing and published works surrounding and regarding disabled voices and disabled folks. My capstone paper in college was about a similar topic and I had such a hard time finding primary resources that I decided to conduct oral interviews and use them instead. I wish this book had been around then, but I am glad it is here now. In general, reviewing collections is tough because of t I feel honored to receive an ARC of this book, I was so excited to get approved for it. There are just not enough writing and published works surrounding and regarding disabled voices and disabled folks. My capstone paper in college was about a similar topic and I had such a hard time finding primary resources that I decided to conduct oral interviews and use them instead. I wish this book had been around then, but I am glad it is here now. In general, reviewing collections is tough because of the variation and writing styles. Some parts I would rate 3 stars, but the majority of it I would rate a 4 or 5. Overall, this book receives 5 full stars from me. We need more writings, stories, and perspectives from the disabled community, and this collection deserves that rating for that aspect alone. There are content warnings on individuals stories, as well as further reading suggestions at the end.Thank you Netgalley and the publisher for giving me the opportunity to review this.
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  • Lauren Mendez
    January 1, 1970
    I found this work to be an incredibly nuanced collection of stories . The authors highlights the diversity of experiences for people with disabilities. The authors share about their own personal experiences and deal with complex topics including race, gender, love, expectations, sexual assault, and accessibility. This book highlights the necessity for society to become accessible, and to stop treating people with disabilities as though they are “brave” for existing, and instead that propel of al I found this work to be an incredibly nuanced collection of stories . The authors highlights the diversity of experiences for people with disabilities. The authors share about their own personal experiences and deal with complex topics including race, gender, love, expectations, sexual assault, and accessibility. This book highlights the necessity for society to become accessible, and to stop treating people with disabilities as though they are “brave” for existing, and instead that propel of all identities advocate for intersectional justice including disability justice as a crucial part of justice and advocacy work. This book is necessary reading.
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  • Mandy Hazen
    January 1, 1970
    This book should be read by everyone. We are so unaware of what people of different abilities go through and make no efforts to make anything easier for anyone. Let us open our hearts and ears to listen and learn. The short stories here allowed the reader to truly access multiple points of view and really educate fully. Highly recommend. I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.
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  • Tammy Buchli
    January 1, 1970
    A really superlative book. As is true of all anthologies, some of the pieces will resonate more with an individual reader than others. For me, I found almost all of them to be useful and some of them to be extraordinarily powerful. Highly recommedned -- a must read.Thanks to NetGalley for providing an ARC copy for my review.
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  • Keah
    January 1, 1970
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