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Disability Awareness - Resources for Learning

Overhead shot of six disabled people of color at a rooftop deck party. An Indigenous Two-Spirit person with a prosthetic leg smiles directly at the camera and gives a thumbs up while everyone else is engaged in conversation. Photo credit: Disabled and Here project

Celebrate Disability Awareness month (October) by attending an event and exploring one of the resources below.

Exhibit

The Art of Disability CultureThe Palo Alto Art Center presents The Art of Disability Culture: Artists with Disabilities Dispelling Myths, Dissolving Barriers, and Disrupting Prejudice, until December 11, 2021. The exhibition is a robust celebration of the diverse, personal, and infinitely varied “disability experience.” Each of the 20 artists featured has one or more disabilities, whether visible or invisible, and the exhibition centers upon their creativity, vulnerability, and unique perspectives. The exhibition celebrates how disability culture can strengthen our communities through the practices of interdependence, accessibility, and inclusion.

TED Talks/Videos

The Autistic Brain: Thinking Across the Spectrum | Dr. Temple Grandin: Dr. Temple Grandin comes to Google to talk about her book: The Autistic Brain: Thinking Across the Spectrum.

Changing the Way We Talk about Disability: Amy addresses societal perceptions of disability and her vision for how we all change the way we approach disability.

I’m Not Your Inspiration – Thank You Very Much: Stella Young is a comedian and journalist who happens to go about her day in a wheelchair — a fact that doesn't, she'd like to make clear, automatically turn her into a noble inspiration to all humanity. 

Blindness Is Just Another Way of Seeing: Blindness has nothing to do with living in the dark. Behind eyes that don’t see is a brain that does see. In fact, blind people use the same visual centers of the brain that sighted people do, and can teach us more about the brain than we think, says Lotfi Merabet.

National Disability Awareness Month Recorded Sessions: In support of National Disability Employment Awareness Month, the Stanford Office of Digital Accessibility hosted workshops, training sessions and office hours to share strategies and solutions for expanding our knowledge of digital accessibility.

Books

Haben: The Deaf, Blind Woman Who Conquered Harvard Law: The incredible life story of Haben Girma, the first deafblind graduate of Harvard Law School, and her amazing journey from isolation to the world stage.

Disability Visibility: First Person Stories from the 21st Century: Activist Alice Wong brings together an urgent, galvanizing collection of personal essays by contemporary disabled writers.

About Us: Essays from the Disability Series of the New York Times: Boldly claiming a space where people with disabilities tell the stories of their own lives—not other’s stories about them—About Us captures the voices of a community that has for too long been stereotyped and misrepresented. 

Being Heumann: An Unrepentant Memoir of a Disability Rights Activist: One of the most influential disability rights activists in US history tells her personal story of fighting for the right to receive an education, have a job, and just be human.

Sometimes We Wait: Ed Roberts designed this book to help those who find themselves in waiting rooms of hospitals, nursing homes, or dealing with the loss of loved ones.

Ed Roberts – Champion of Disability Rights: Biography about Edward Verne Roberts, who, at age 14, became a quadriplegic as a result of Polio. The life he lived post-Polio was one of transformation, both for himself, and for society’s image of people with disabilities.

Movies/TV

Crip Camp: A groundbreaking summer camp galvanizes a group of teens with disabilities to help build a movement, forging a new path toward greater equality.

Coda: Ruby is the only hearing member of a deaf family. She works mornings before school to help her parents and brother keep their fishing business afloat, but in joining her high school's choir club, Ruby finds herself drawn to both her duet partner and her latent passion for singing.

Becoming Helen Keller: The life and legacy of Helen Keller, including how she used her celebrity to advocate for human rights and social justice for women, the poor and people with disabilities. 

Children of a Lesser God: A new speech teacher at a school for the deaf falls in love with the janitor, a deaf woman speechless by choice.

The Sound of MetalMetal drummer Ruben begins to lose his hearing. When a doctor tells him his condition will worsen, he thinks his career and life is over. His girlfriend Lou checks the former addict into a rehab for the deaf hoping it will prevent a relapse and help him adapt to his new life. After being welcomed and accepted just as he is, Ruben must choose between his new normal and the life he once knew.

Temple GrandinAutism gave her a vision. She gave it a voice. Temple Grandin follows a young woman's perseverance and determination while struggling with the isolating challenges of autism at a time when it was still unknown. The film chronicles Temple Grandin's early diagnosis, turbulent growth and development — and emergence as a woman with an innate sensitivity and understanding of animal behavior.

Moonlight Sonata: Deafness in Three Movements: Weaving a story about what we discover when we push beyond loss, Moonlight Sonata is a deeply personal memoir about a deaf boy growing up, his deaf grandfather growing old, and Ludwig van Beethoven the year he was blindsided by deafness and wrote his iconic sonata.

The Eyes of Me: An extraordinary look into the world of blind teenagers — where crossing an intersection, cooking a meal, or navigating unfamiliar areas is a challenge unlike any that sighted viewers must consider — The Eyes of Me offers fresh perspectives on growing up, fitting in, and preparing for adulthood.

Ray: Biography of Ray Charles who was a legendary musician who pioneered the genre of soul music during the 1950s.

*Please note that above lists are provided as a service and are not exhaustive, but a sample to encourage learning.