First, listen to The Hidden City podcast, or read a transcript of the podcast, both are available in the Hidden City Resources folder. You may also want to listen to Ryan Knighton’s podcast from This American Life – Neighbourhood Watch (Act Two: Baby Steps). This podcast is available here: http://www.thisamericanlife.org/radio-archives/episode/420/neighborhood-watch?act=2 , and the transcript is also available in the Hidden City Resources folder.
In the CBC program, several disabled people describe how they are excluded in Toronto. Similarly in the ‘Baby Steps’ excerpt, Ryan Knighton reveals how the city is filled with invisible or taken for granted barriers. Begin to think about where disability and ‘disablement’ emerge in your communities, workplaces, school, home and so forth ‘are hidden’ – often in plain view. As you reflect on the podcasts, think about similar examples of exclusion in your everyday life. Maybe it’s a step to your favourite restaurant, or a trip hazard on the sidewalk. It might be stereotypical images of beauty, size or movement that you pass each day, but have simply ignored. It might be encroaching gentrification of a neighbourhood with ample low-rent housing. Jot down the examples that come to mind; these might be helpful for the assignment.
Once you have an example that you can share with the class, capture it in a digital photograph, an audio-recording. When working with visual images or audio recordings, please remember to include a brief written description of its content in order to ensure your contribution is accessible to everyone who looks at your submission. The image description does not count towards the overall assignment word count. There is a link with helpful tips for image description.
Then write a brief written analysis of your example. This analysis should be just a few paragraphs in length (minimum 500 words and maximum 650 words). Your analysis should use a Disability Studies perspective and address the ways that barriers encountered in the built environment, policies and practices, social attitudes etc are often the source of disability. Thinking this way helps us to start to locate the problem of disability differently – rather than disability being located within an individual’s body or mind we can see how disability can be located in structures, systems and assumptions. This shift in thinking about the location of the problem of disability will be helpful as you write your papers later in the course.
Please cite all course material or readings in APA.
You must post your completed assignment to the Hidden City Forum in the discussion at AND submit it in the assignment folder.