Valuing Care and Support in an Era of Celebrating Independence: Disabled Young People’s Reflections on Their Meaning and Role in Their Lives
The right to a supported independent life is a central dimension to disability politics. This focus has been used to challenge institutionalised living and the exclusion of disabled people from areas such as education and employment. The importance given to independence has also led to a critique of care. This critique has been a point of contention between disability studies and feminist theorising. In this article I argue it is important to return to these debates because contemporary conditions mean advocacy of independence is being co-opted into rhetorics of self-sufficiency. At the same time care on its own does not offer a productive alternative. The article draws from an ESRC project undertaken with disabled young people to advocate for the importance of both supported independence and of support being caring. It concludes by arguing that an expansive welfare state is required to create the conditions that can make that possible.
SOURCE: McLaughlin, J. “Valuing Care and Support in an Era of Celebrating Independence: Disabled Young People’s Reflections on Their Meaning and Role in Their Lives.” Sociology, August 28, 2019.
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