Browsing by Author "Watermeyer, Brian"
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- ItemDisability : the forgotten side of race science(African Sun Media, 2020) Swartz, Leslie; Bantjes, Jason; Lourens, Heidi; Watermeyer, BrianThe impetus for this book was an article, the first line of the abstract of which reads: “Colored women in South Africa have an increased risk for low cognitive functioning.”1 There is no question that the article reproduces racist ideas, and we are in agreement with the authors of the other chapters in this book. There is, however, another side to this article that has been less discussed. What does it mean to describe a group of people as having “increased risk for low cognitive functioning”? In much that has been written about the article, there has been almost no discussion of the social context in which the idea of somebody having, or being at risk of, “low cognitive functioning” is seen, automatically, as a form of insult.
- ItemFreedom to read : a personal account of the ‘book famine’(AOSIS Publishing, 2014-11) Watermeyer, BrianEven in the digital age, access to literature and other information for people with print impairments remains extremely poor, especially in the developing world. Reading access holds cascading implications for education, economic empowerment, social articipation and self-worth. In June 2013 member states of WIPO (the World Intellectual Property Organization) concluded a landmark treaty to reduce copyright impediments to the dissemination of literature to print impaired people. Its effectiveness is not yet clear. Meanwhile, critics hold that disability studies’ analyses have too often lacked insight into the personal and psychological ramifications of exclusion. This article provides an account of the ‘book famine’ from the perspective of a print impaired South African disability researcher, arguing that thorough investigation of the impressions of exclusion is necessary for change. The account highlights the personal, even malignant psychological reverberations of deprivations such as the ‘book famine’, which may carry traumatic effects which cement the status quo.
- ItemIs it possible to create a politically engaged, contextual psychology of disability?(Taylor & Francis Routledge, 2012-03) Watermeyer, BrianUntil recently disability studies has ignored questions regarding the psychological nature of oppression. Proponents of the social model have viewed such concerns as diversionary, diluting their emphasis on material and economic barriers to inclusion. This paper argues that the discipline’s role of reflecting and interrogating disablism will remain incomplete and lacking in transformative power without undertaking a psychological conceptualisation of disabled personhood. Some prior attempts at elaborating the social model to include the psychological realm have been presented; these are critiqued, and argued to lack truly psychological conceptualisation. Preliminary ideas regarding a proposed psychology of disablism are presented. The focus of this work will be the exploration of bi-directional links between disablist ideology and disabled subjectivity, operationalised through interpersonal and institutional processes of lifelong socialisation. Reflections towards development of the under-theorised notion of internalised oppression are presented. Conclusions are that a combination of critical psychoanalytic insights and the participatory methods of liberatory and feminist psychology hold promise in driving disability transformation.
- ItemA web of gaps : a discussion of research strands concerning Global South families with a disabled child(Taylor & Francis Open, 2017) Hunt, Xanthe; Watermeyer, BrianBackground: In low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), limited access to a range of supports means that families often carry primary responsibility for the care of a disabled child. The impact of this responsibility is poorly understood. Objective: To present a selective review, critique, and comparison of the prominent areas of research aimed at understanding families with disabled children in the Global South. Design: We compare and critically discuss prominent bodies of literature concerning the family-disability-poverty nexus in LMICs. Results: Three prominent bodies of literature concerned with families with a disabled child in LMICs are reviewed. These were selected based on their relative prevalence in a large review of the literature, and comprise (1) work concerning quality of life (FQOL) of families with a disabled child; (2) interventions aimed at supporting families with a disabled child in LMICs; and (3) the ways in which culture mediates the families’ experience of disability. FQOL research points to poverty as a primary source of family distress, and directs our focus towards families’ own expertise in coping with their circumstances. Intervention literature from LMICs highlights the family as the unit of analysis and praxis concerning disabled children, and reminds us of the contextual factors which must be considered when working with their families. Conclusions: Culturally oriented research on poverty, disability, and the family nuances our understanding of the locally-determined priorities of families with a disabled child in LMICs. All three research strands carry benefits, limitations and gaps. The complexity of understanding families with a disabled child in LMICs comes to the fore, directing us away from narrow application of any single theoretical or research framework. Future researchers may draw on insights provided here in creating a more integrated approach.