Affect and the Disability Encounter
Dr Ria Cheyne, Liverpool Hope University
Date: Wednesday 5 October, 2016
Place: EDEN 036, Liverpool Hope University, UK
Disability makes us feel. Affect theory provides a rich and generative vocabulary for exploring the ways disability is experienced and encountered; affects are inherently unwieldy, intractable and impure, resisting precise definition. Dr Cheyne examines the role of emotion in disability encounters, and in Disability Studies. Scholars and activists have examined the ways in which disability encounters involve a range of emotional and sensational responses, and place a burden of emotional labour on the disabled person. However, the field has enacted a binary between acceptable and unacceptable affects: pride and anger, for example, are perceived as legitimate subjects for investigation, while the only acceptable response to feelings such as pity, fear and shame is a critical one. The field’s engagement with affect and emotion has therefore been channelled in specific, limiting ways. Dr Cheyne argues that Disability Studies must examine the effects of affects if it is to successfully challenge disablism.
Ria Cheyne is Lecturer in the Department of Disability and Education at Liverpool Hope University, where she is Core Member of the Centre for Culture and Disability Studies, Editorial Adviser for the Journal of Literary and Cultural Disability Studies, and Guest Editor of a special issue on genre. Her work brings together disability studies, literary studies, and the medical humanities, focusing on representations of disability in contemporary literature and culture.
This seminar is part of the CCDS series, Disability and the Emotions. Other dates include:
16 Nov 2016, Pride and Prejudice – Emotions in the lives of fathers of autistic children, Joanne Heeney.
14 Dec 2016, “An Unstable and Fantastical Space of Absence”: The Entanglement of Memory and Emotion, Margaret Price.
18 Jan 2017, Pain as Emotional Experience, Emma Sheppard.
01 Mar 2017, “For the future let those who come to play with me have no hearts”: Dis/enabling Narratives and the Affect of Pity in Oscar Wilde’s “The Birthday of the Infanta”, Chris Foss.
10 May 2017, A Secret Worth Knowing: Living Mad Lives in the Shadow of the Asylum, Michael Rembis.
For further information please contact: Dr David Bolt
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