About Us

The Disability Studies Workshop takes disability as an object and method. We explore disability as a subject matter and use disability as a critical lens (akin to race, class, or gender) to produce new forms for understanding wider social, cultural, and aesthetic domains. We recognize that disabled people are often unintentionally left out of academic work both as research participants and as scholars. The DS Workshop promotes projects that treat both disabled participants and disabled scholars as vital sources of knowledge.

Our group reflects the interdisciplinarity of the field of disability studies: we discuss student work and readings ranging from anthropology, philosophy, and history, to queer and affect theory, and post-socialist studies. Past quarter themes include “Disability and Citizenship” and “Disability Futures and the Neoliberal Present.” We have also had sessions discussing law, public policy, and policies of accommodations at academic institutions. Our discussions often revolve around the ways in which categories of race, gender, sexuality, class, and disability intersect and shape the experiences of individuals and groups in the US and around the world.

We aim to provide a forum for developing shared vocabulary on disability theory, core knowledge of disability methodology, and an environment to discuss disability in critical, creative, and imaginative ways. We welcome participants to join our discussion regardless of the amount of exposure to disability studies.


Who we are:

We aim to draw together individuals working on disability studies themes from a wide range of disciplines into an intellectual community that will support, challenge, and improve each other’s work.

Our participants come from various disciplines including English, Psychology, Comparative Human  Development, Political Science, and History and Social Services Administration. We welcome all U Chicago members including Ph.D, MAPSS, and undergraduate students and faculty as well scholars from our neighboring universities and Chicago area community members.