• Universal Design Research as a New Materialist Practice

    Author(s):
    Aimi Hamraie (see profile)
    Date:
    2012
    Group(s):
    Critical Disability Studies
    Subject(s):
    Disability studies, History and philosophy of science and technology, New materialism
    Item Type:
    Article
    Tag(s):
    Universal Design, universalism
    Permanent URL:
    http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/M6PH41
    Abstract:
    In Disability Studies, Universal Design (UD) is a concept that is often borrowed from an architectural or design context to mean an ideology of inclusion and flexibility with a range of applications in education, technology, and other milieus. This paper returns to UD as a design phenomenon, considering knowledge production practices as conditions of possibility for inclusive design. UD appropriates and redefines normalizing research methods, namely anthropometry, that were developed in the 19th century for uses that are contrary to disability rights and justice, such as eugenics, colonialism, and scientific racism. The paper argues that critical disability theory should understand work in UD research and design practice in order to formulate a nuanced, new materialist and historical disability epistemology, particularly in engagements with scientific knowledge.
    Metadata:
    Published as:
    Journal Article
    Journal:
    Disability Studies Quarterly
    Volume:
    32
    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    3 months ago
    License:
    All Rights Reserved

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