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Over the past three decades, disability studies has emerged as a robust and vibrant field of intellectual inquiry, bringing together cutting-edge research in the humanities, social sciences, and health sciences. The discipline analyzes the cultural and political significance of disability, examining the construction and production of disability in history and in the present moment. Disability studies hones critical tools to analyze how societies grapple with physical and mental difference, the way disability becomes a site for negotiating stigma and social power, and questions of normativity and deviance.

Disability is a fundamental dimension of human diversity. One in every five Americans lives with a disability, making it our country’s largest minority population. Students increasingly recognize that gaining a more sophisticated understanding of disability experience is a critical element in their education, and one that will help prepare them for a growing number of disability-specific careers. Drawing from rich offerings in disciplines as various as anthropology, bioethics, English, health systems administration, nursing, philosophy, psychology, theater and performance studies, theology, and women’s and gender studies, the minor in disability studies will enable students to explore this critical facet of human diversity in an in-depth fashion as it relates to their major field of study and to their professional aspirations.

Relevant News

Learning in Practice Fellowships Awarded

December 9th, 2019

With the support  from the Provost’s Innovation in Teaching award, the Disability Studies program has granted three Learning In Practice Fellowshi…

Georgetown Student Works to End Stigma Against Disabilities in Kazakhstan

January 13th, 2020

Madeleine Gibbons Shapiro

This past summer, Madeleine Gibbons-Shapiro (C’21) conducted a social impact assessment of a café that employs intellectually disabled individuals in Kazakhstan. Because of her study, this impressive café can begin to work to expand its operation more widely across the country.

Lydia X.Z.Brown (C’15) Returns to Teach in Disability Studies for 2020

December 17th, 2019

Brown, an internationally significant disability justice activist, currently co-leads a project on algorithmic fairness and disability rights at the Institute for Technology Law & Policy at Georgetown’s law school. More broadly, their work has focused on violence against multiply-marginalized disabled people, especially institutionalization, policing, and incarceration.

Disability Studies Learning in Practice Fellowships Awarded

December 17th, 2019

With the support from the Provost’s Innovation in Teaching award, the Disability Studies program has granted three Learning In Practice Fellowships to Madeleine Gibbons-Shapiro (C’21), Kenna Chick (C’20), and graduate student Jinseul Jun are among the recipients.