Archive for November 2013

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[ecrea] CFP: “Constructing (Dis)Ability”

Thu Nov 07 10:21:29 GMT 2013

Call for Submissions

TransScripts, an interdisciplinary online journal in the Humanities and Social Sciences at UC Irvine
Volume IV: 2014
“Constructing (Dis)Ability”

Journal Publication Date: March 31, 2014
Deadline for the submission of abstracts/papers: January 10, 2014

TransScripts – the interdisciplinary online journal in the Humanities and Social Sciences based at the University of California, Irvine – invites graduate students to submit their work for publication. The theme of our fourth volume will be “Constructing (Dis)Ability.”

Who is “able” and who is “disabled?” Who decides, and based upon what criteria? In exploring the multiple and intersecting matrices of power these questions evoke, it becomes clear that discourses of ability are as ubiquitous as they are overlooked, as protean as they are embedded.

On the one hand, we recognize the common distinction between “impairment” and “disability” advanced by disability studies scholars and codified in W.H.O., U.N., U.S., and U.K. disability laws. This distinction posits “impairment” as the reality of physical, emotional, or cognitive difference, and “disability” as the social understanding and implications of that difference. On the other hand, we acknowledge that ability is, in many ways, as elastic a concept as disability, and encourage submissions that problematize both sides of the binary, as well as the binary itself.

The aging process and aleatory events alike render impairment a near certainty for the majority of the population. The experience of disability is—to a certain extent—blind to privilege. However, it is in examining disability that some of the most intransigent social justice issues come to the fore. What it means to be “disabled” is contingent on questions of access, be it access to healthcare, education, political representation or the judicial system. In the United States and around the world, race, class, and gender often function as gatekeepers, either facilitating or restricting that access.

While the field of disability studies continues to gain traction within the academy, Trans-Scripts understands ability as a lens of analysis that resists compartmentalization. Accordingly, we encourage scholars from a wide range of backgrounds to contribute their ideas. We appreciate and will consider pieces that speak not only to the social construction of disability, but also to the material—and political—consequences of that construction. Our editorial collective will read submissions from disciplines including (but not limited to): history, art history, literature, philosophy, theology, psychology, education, political science, anthropology, sociology, informatics, public policy, public health, and bioethics. We also eagerly seek the perspectives of scholars working in fat studies, queer studies,women’s and gender studies, film and visual studies, urban studies, science and technology studies, cultural studies, and critical race studies. “We are happy to consider coautho red submissions, and especially welcome faculty-graduate student collaborations.”

Possible paper topics include, but are not limited to:
The gendering of disability
The ethics of accommodations—specifically in sports
Cochlear implants and Deaf culture
The racialization of disability
Norms and pathologization in the concepts of impairment, ability, disability
Sexual norms and the "disabled" body
The concept of normal functioning
Disability and social justice
Ontologies and epistemologies of disability
Educating people with disabilities: challenges and opportunities
The New Disability History
Ability as rhetoric
“Crip Studies” and Alison Kafer's Feminist Queer Crip.
Rendering the subaltern body
and selfadvocacy The disabled body in virtual space(s)
Built environments as conditioning bodily norms and expectations
The neurodiversity movement
The relationship between transgender studies and disability studies
The politics of designer babies
Ethnographies of ability and disability
The metaphysics and/or phenomenology of embodiment
Disability as socioeconomic indicator
Discussions of the recent US failure to ratify the U.N. Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities
The politics of PostTraumatic
Stress Disorder
The therapy/enhancement distinction
Recent changes to the DSM
“Obamacare” and the disability community
Theories of pain

Trans-Scripts welcomes all submissions that engage topics related to “Constructing (Dis)Ability.” They may, but certainly need not, address the examples listed above. As we believe that scholarship from a variety of approaches can help inform contemporary understandings, submissions need not conform to any disciplinary, methodological, temporal, or other criteria. They need only be original, well researched, and properly cited. English language contributions from all universities in all countries will be considered.

Faculty Contributors
Selected graduate student work will appear alongside contributions from renowned faculty members,including editorial pieces and scholarly articles. Past contributors have included Étienne Balibar,Hortense Spillers, Lee Edelman, Roderick Ferguson, and Temple Grandin.

Submission Guidelines and Review Process
The deadline for submission is 10 January 2014. All submissions should be written in English. The total word count should be between 3,000 and 12,000 words, including footnotes. Explanatory footnotes should be kept to a minimum. Submissions should employ the MLA style of citation (for further information on the journal’s submission guidelines and mission statement, see the journal website at All pieces should be submitted as a word document attached in an email (totransscriptsjournal /at/ The email should include your name, institution, program/department,and an email address at which you can be contacted. Please also include a short abstract of less than 300 words describing the content and argument of
 the piece.

Comments and General Inquiries
Please direct all general inquiries about the journal or any comments on published pieces to our 2013 volume’s Editor-in-Chief, Andrea Milne, at (milnea /at/

Baden Offord, Ph.D.
Professor of Cultural Studies and Human Rights
Acting Course Coordinator, BA
School of Arts and Social Sciences
Southern Cross University

PO Box 157, Lismore 2480 Australia

e: (baden.offord /at/
t: + 61 2 6620 3162
f: + 61 2 6622 1683

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