- The Oxford Handbook of Disability History
- The Perils and Promises of Disability Biography
- Disability History and Greco-Roman Antiquity
- Intellectual Disability in the European Middle Ages
- Disability in the Premodern Arab World
- Disability and the History of Eugenics
- Social History of Medicine and Disability History
- Material Culture, Technology, and the Body in Disability History
- Designing Objects and Spaces: A Modern Disability History
- Documents, Ethics, and the Disability Historian
- Disability and Work During the Industrial Revolution in Britain
- Disability and Work in South Asia and the United Kingdom
- Disability and Work in British West Africa
- Race, Work, and Disability in Progressive Era United States
- Organized Labor and Disability in Post–World War II United States
- Deaf-Blindness and the Institutionalization of Special Education in Nineteenth-Century Europe
- Disability and Madness in Colonial Asylum Records in Australia and New Zealand
- Madness, Transnationalism, and Emotions in Nineteenth- and Early Twentieth-Century New Zealand
- Institutions for People with Disabilities in North America
- Picturing Disability in Eighteenth-Century England
- Disability, Race, and Gender on the Stage in Antebellum America
- Polio and Disability in Cold War Hungary
- Monstrous Births, Birth Defects, Unusual Anatomy, and Disability in Europe and North America
- Disability in Modern Chinese Cinema
- Transnational Interconnections in Nineteenth-Century Western Deaf Communities
- The Disability Rights Movement in the United States
- The Rise of Gay Rights and the Disavowal of Disability in the United States
- Disabled Veterans and the Wounds of War
Abstract and Keywords
Concern for health and safety, along with the desire for higher wages and shorter workdays, inspired and shaped the organized labor movement in the United States in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The risks of work-related illness and disability were of grave importance to working people and the unions they formed to represent their interests. During the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, the organized labor movement sought to minimize disability by making workplaces safer and working-class people’s living conditions better. Still, the movement understood disability as a common experience in working people’s lives and thus advocated for disability rights and policies to support disabled citizens’ access to health care, financial security, educational and economic opportunities, and public spaces. The organized labor movement was also an important site of disability activism, as unionized disabled workers pushed for disability rights.
Audra Jennings is Associate Professor in the Honors Academy and director of the Office of Scholar Development at Western Kentucky University. She is the author of Out of the Horrors of War: Disability Politics in World War II America (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2016).
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