Poster Presentations



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Faculty Mentor

Liz DePoy and Stephen Gilson


Interdisciplinary Disability Studies


In the visual and material culture of the 21st century, image is power. This inquiry used thematic analysis to examine the meanings of disability imagery on a continuum from tragedy to an inevitable and celebrated part of human diversity and provocateur of social change. Five themes emerged: disability as tragic (exclusion, isolation, fear); disability as inspiration porn (disabled people are brave or special just for living); close but not quite (some positive imagery segregation and impairment are foregrounded); and celebration of disability as human diversity (the goal for change).

Publication Date


Document Type



University of Maine Center for Community Inclusion and Disability Studies


Orono, Maine

Conference Name

2017 University of Maine Student Symposium: Research & Creative Activity

Conference Location

Bangor, Maine


social change, disability


Family, Life Course, and Society | Social Work | Sociology of Culture

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Disability Imagery: A Bastion of Social Change



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