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sasha's picture


Trying to think of someone else's identity and access and the first thing that came to mind were people who are, for lack of a better term, physically incapable on campus/in the city (I know this word might be demeaning, please excuse me if this term is offensive, not sure how to frame it without being disrespectful). I remmeber when I first arrived to campus I was having a hard time grasping the idea that some train stations were "handicap accessible" and others weren't. Back home every station/bus is equipped for those who are physically disabled and just thinking about the idea that people would have to get off at certain stops just to be able to have access to an exit is outrageous for me. I was having the same feeling when I arrived to campus. I believe there is only two dorms that are semi-equipped/set-up for those who are "disabled". Same for class buildings, I believe the only buildings that are accessible are Dalton and Park -- making classes less accessible. But now that I think about it, this does not necessarily mean that those who are physically "disabled" wear this as their identity, this was just my initial assumption which can be problematic ... so maybe my whole post might be wrong ... I guess it can apply to those who do see this as part of their identity.


jccohen's picture


Great that you're using this space to write about something you're uncertain about how to name and think/talk about!  One thing that might be helpful in thinking about access to education on our campus (and in other sites) in the distinction Lennard Davis talks about between impairment and disability, and the idea that someone might have a physical impairment, for example, and use a wheelchair to get around but this is only a 'disability' if the environment doesn't have ramps, does have curbs, etc. 

Another point that your post raises for me is the importance of not-knowing, and of observing and asking others to get a better understanding of their experiences and perspectives...