Two Events Examine Disability and Human Rights

The Center for Persons with Disabilities at Utah State University continuesits 40th Anniversary Celebration with a look at disability and humanrights. Two events will examine the place of disability and advocacy inhistory.


The Exhibit, January 9-27

An exhibit on the history of disability and advocacy in thewestern world will be available in Special Collections at the Merrill-CazierLibrary.


It includes panels that outline the history of disability and advocacy. Thiswalk through 3000 years of the human condition is remarkably detailed. It’ssometimes shocking, sometimes poignant, and always informative.


For example, it reveals a dark side to the Greek tradition that reveredperfection in the human body: Aristotle also recommended that there shouldbe a law “to prevent the rearing of deformed children.” In his Politics,Aristotle wrote, “As to the exposure and rearing of children, let there be alaw that no deformed child shall live.”



Here’s another excerpt, from two thousand years farther down thetimeline: The medical model emerged around the 18th century, definingdisability as any one of a series of biological deficiencies located in thebody. … A gradual understanding of science led to new and often painfultreatments for persons with disabilities. People became objects of study, wereused in experiments, and assumed the role of “patients.”


The exhibit will be in the Special Collections area of the Merrill-CazierLibrary. Three cases will also display some of the CPD’s current,disability-related work.


The movie, January 20

The film Lives Worth Living will be screened at the Merrill-Cazierlibrary in room 154 at  1 p.m., and apanel discussion will follow. This event is co-sponsored by the Disability LawCenter. The 55-minute movie was produced by the PBS series Independent Lens, and it documents the history of America’sdisability rights movement.


Space is limited for the screening of the film and panel presentation, andwill be available on a first come, first served basis. Faculty memberinterested in arranging a separate showing of the film and related guestlecture for an individual class should contact Jeff Sheen.


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