A History of Disability in England

From the medieval period to the present day

By Simon Jarrett

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Throughout history numerous individuals with disabilities have had to pit themselves against huge obstacles placed in their way because of the type of person they were born as, the type of person they became through accident, illness or circumstances, or the type of person they have been perceived as. This book tells the story of how disabled people have done this, how they have seen themselves, how they have been perceived and treated by others and how they have influenced society.

People with disabilities have always been a part of English society and this concise thousand-year history ranges from the surprisingly integrated communities of the medieval and early modern periods to the institutionalisation of the 19th and 20th centuries.

Sometimes the history of disability is described as a hidden history. This book argues that it is no such thing. The history of people with disabilities is often in front of our eyes, yet we frequently choose to ignore it, or simply do not see it. Accounts of daily life, events, art, literature, family histories and political debate have always featured people with disabilities who are there for all to see, but too often observers, particularly non-disabled observers, gaze straight past them.


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Additional Information

  • Publication Status: Completed
  • Pages: 192
  • ISBN: 9781802078558 (Hardcover)


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