Disability and Passing

Blurring the Lines of Identity

Edited by Jeffrey A. Brune and Daniel J. Wilson
Book Cover

PB: $31.95
EAN: 978-1-4399-0980-5
Publication: May 13

HC: $86.50
EAN: 978-1-4399-0979-9
Publication: May 13

Ebook: $31.95
EAN: 978-1-4399-0981-2

216 pages
5.5 x 8.25
1 halftone

Why passing is a crucial concept in disability studies

Disability and Passing


Passing—an act usually associated with disguising race—also relates to disability. Whether a person classified as mentally ill struggles to suppress aberrant behavior to appear “normal” or a person intentionally takes on a disability identity to gain some advantage, passing is a pervasive and much-discussed phenomenon. Nevertheless, Disability and Passing is the first anthology to examine this issue. The editors and contributors to this volume explore the intersections of disability, race, gender, and sexuality as these various aspects of identity influence each other and make identity fluid. They argue that the line between disability and normality is blurred, discussing disability as an individual identity and as a social category. And they discuss the role of stigma in decisions about whether or not to pass. Focusing on the United States from the nineteenth century to the present, the essays in Disability and Passing speak to the complexity of individual decisions about passing and open the conversation for broader discussion. Contributors include: Dea Boster, Allison Carey, Peta Cox, Kristen Harmon, David Linton, Michael Rembis, and the editors.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments 1 Introduction Jeffrey A. Brune and Daniel J. Wilson 2 Passing in the Shadow of FDR: Polio Survivors, Passing, and the Negotiation of Disability Daniel J. Wilson 3 The Multiple Layers of Disability Passing in Life, Literature, and Public Discourse Jeffrey A. Brune 4 The Menstrual Masquerade David Linton 5 “I Made Up My Mind to Act Both Deaf and Dumb”: Displays of Disability and Slave Resistance in the Antebellum American South Dea H. Boster 6 Passing as Sane, or How to Get People to Sit Next to You on the Bus Peta Cox 7 Athlete First: A Note on Passing, Disability, and Sport Michael A. Rembis 8 Th e Sociopolitical Contexts of Passing and Intellectual Disability Allison C. Carey 9 Growing Up to Become Hearing: Dreams of Passing in Oral Deaf Education Kristen C. Harmon Contributors Index

About the Author(s)

Jeffrey A. Brune is Assistant Professor of History at Gallaudet University. Currently he is working on his monograph, Disability Stigma and the Modern American State.

Daniel J. Wilson is Professor of History at Muhlenberg College. He is author of several books, including Polio and Living with Polio: The Epidemic and Its Survivors.