Satan is holding your tongue back : stuttering as moral failure

Isaacs, Dane H. (2021)

CITATION: Isaacs, D. H. 2021. Satan is holding your tongue back : stuttering as moral failure. African Journal of Disability, 10:a773, doi:10.4102/ajod.v10i0.773.

The original publication is available at https://ajod.org

Publication of this article was funded by the Stellenbosch University Open Access Fund

Article

Background: The last decade has seen researchers and speech–language pathologists employ and advocate for a disability studies approach in the study of the lived experiences of people who stutter and in the design of interventions and treatment approaches for such individuals. Joshua St. Pierre, one of the few theorists to explore stuttering as a disability, mentions as a key issue the liminal nature of people who stutter when describing their disabling experiences. Objectives: This article aimed to build on the work of St. Pierre, exploring the liminal nature of people who stutter. Method: Drawing on my personal experiences of stuttering as a coloured South African man, I illuminated the liminal nature of stuttering. Results: This analytic autoethnography demonstrates how the interpretation of stuttering as the outcome of moral failure leads to the discrimination and oppression of people who stutter by able-bodied individuals as well as individuals who stutter. Conclusion: As long as stuttering is interpreted as the outcome of moral failure, the stigma and oppression, as well as the disablism experience by people who stutter, will continue to be concealed and left unaddressed.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/110593
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