social in(ex)clusion, dis/ability and technology

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Presentation by Alan Foley and Beth Ferri from Syracuse University on the paradoxes of assistive technology - the ways technology can exclude. Presented at the 11th Annual Second City Disability Studies in Education Conference - May 12-15, 2011.


  • 1. Social In(ex)clusion, Dis/ability and Technology Alan Foley & Beth A. Ferri Syracuse University

2. Technology is oBen assumed to be liberaDngmaking up for social, educaDonal, and physical barriers to full-parDcipaDon. Less visible are the ways technology can also isolate people, creaDng unique forms of social exclusion. 3. Access/Barrier 4. The ReacDve nature of accessibility most assisDve technology is reacDve in design and by the Dme an accessible version is developed, mainstream technology has moved another step forward (Sderstrm & YRerhus, 2010, p. 311). In other words, AssisDve technology will always assist something that already exists (p. 313). 5. Technology and the elimina0on of disability AssisDve technology Technology, parDcularly for people seen as way to replace with disabiliDes, has been seen as human supports and the futurisDc anecdote for promote greater impairment. With technology independence. disabiliDes would simply fade away or become inconsequenDal. Assumed goal is independence & transcendence 6. The imagined utopia made possible through technology Invisible & visible disabiliDes Transcendence of the may trade placesbut norm (disabled) body--not remains at center. acceptance of dierent ways of being in the world. Technology privileges parDcular & normaDve ways Compulsory able-bodiness (McRuer) via technology of being. 7. d to technology:Social mea nings aRache ndependence , b elonging, & icompetences aRached to AT: S ocial meaning & dependency nce, restricDon, diere As idenDty markers, the symbolic value associated with various types of technologies plays a huge role in determining how readily they will be taken up or rejected (Hocking, 1999; Sderstrm & YRerhus, 2010). But, is it cool factor? 8. What do I want to carry around? $600 $6,000 9. H& M"(+S$" *+(%6#;#@%."5/%%"+("=3+0:"5$&+ !"#$%&()(*+,-+.(/0+1(#+%+,(2.+34*++*7"5(03+$(.? @30(73E"=/E U.$+*%"8+3+*& 8:$11$.;?$%&&& "8+3.%3-%"8:$11$.;(()(#!""#&((#$"%&() 8:$1&"+(? U.$+*%"8+3+*& H*5$M*-4?N&+$73+*%"#*+O**."*+,-.(/0(1(*+,-.(/2" 2347*.+&? 234235!""#$"%&())*+,-.&?(")*+,-.&"/00*1+*% !"#$%& 2-$.+" 6 )*1(-+"$+*7 3"&54#/-5"!+.P,-Q?- *@-QQ-#R($#3(Q$"A+#?. 8:3-*?" " "8*55*-"3&&,7*&"355"-*&1(.&$#$5$+4"9(-"+:$&"5$&+$.;


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