Students are expected to attend all classes.
- The student is able to read, analyse, and critically reflect on primary material, i.e. Barnes’ book.
- The student can distinguish, analyse, and elaborate on different conceptions of disability and their relation with well-being in normative-ethical discussions.
- The student can explain main themes in the disability ethics discussion and their impact on related discussions such as about enhancement or health and disease.
- The student is able to provide an informed argument on specific ethical questions about disability.
Most people assume that being disabled is always bad for you. Even if we get rid of all discrimination and prejudice against disabled people and even if we make sure that society is as accommodating as possible, being disabled seems generally harmful. In her recent book “The Minority Body. A Theory of Disability”, Elizabeth Barnes argues that this view is mistaken. Barnes thinks that disability does not need to have a negative impact on well-being. Rather, being disabled is a way of having a minority body. Her argument has wide-ranging implications, not only for debates in disability ethics, but for all debates that make assumptions about our relationship to our body, about the value of normality, and its impact on well-being.|
In this course, we will read Elizabeth Barnes’ book “The Minority Body. A Theory of Disability”. Every session will be devoted to one chapter of the book to allow for in-depth discussion. In the first part of each session, we will examine the arguments of the chapter. The lecturer will explain the background of Barnes’ arguments and provide an overview of discussions related to the theme of the book. In the second part of each meeting, students are expected to participate actively in discussions about the meaning, relevance and implications of the issues raised by Barnes.