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date: 23 May 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Mainstream philosophers take for granted that disability is a prediscursive, transcultural, and transhistorical disadvantage, an objective human defect or characteristic that ought to be prevented, corrected, eliminated, or cured. That these assumptions are contestable, that it might be the case that disability is a historically and culturally specific, contingent social phenomenon, a complex apparatus of power, rather than a natural attribute or property that certain people possess, is not considered, let alone seriously entertained. This chapter draws on the insights of Michel Foucault to advance a historicist and relativist conception of disability as an apparatus (dispositif) of power and identify mechanisms of power within philosophy that produce the underrepresentation of disabled philosophers in the profession and the marginalization of philosophy of disability in the discipline.

Keywords: disability, Michel Foucault, apparatus, historicist, relativist, underrepresentation of disabled philosophers

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