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Regular version of the site

Book chapter

Disability

P. 1-3.

Disability is a part of human condition but it is also a contested field of various definitions and policies. Various approaches to understanding and treatment of disabilities are referred to as models of disability. The two main opposite approaches are social and medical models. In the medical model, disability is considered as a personal problem, caused by a trauma, an illness or some other health condition, thus calling for a need for medical cure and care. In contrast with medical model which claims the necessity to cure the impairments, the social model views disability as a consequence of an unjust social order and insists on the correction of the society, which disables a person. The social views on disability and disability activism mutually influenced each other and contributed to legislative changes.  Disability models are embodied and reinforced in welfare policies. The contemporary disability scholarship tries to overcome the dichotomy between medical and social models and takes into account complex issues of body, pain, sexuality and reproduction, intimate experiences and emotions, gender and age.