Disability Term Paper

1479 Words Jan 13th, 2011 6 Pages
INTRO TO SOCIOLOGY 1
Running head: DISABILITY TERM PAPER
Disability Term Paper
By
Jose A. Rosario
Student # 700316
Central Texas College
For Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirement for SOCI 1301
Introduction to Sociology
Submitted to Dr. Duffy
December 7, 2010
INTRO TO SOCIOLOGY 2
INTRODUCTION
This paper demonstrates that hitherto sociological analyses of disability have been theoretically and methodologically inadequate. It is written that sociology, in common with the other major contemporary disciplines, has accepted almost without question the legitimacy of the individualistic biomedical approach to disability. It is argued that this partial and essentially 'non-disabled' reading of the phenomenon has succeeded in
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With their emphasis upon meaning, identity, and the process of labeling explored the relationship between disablement and socially proscribed behavior. Initially, sociologists working within this perspective were interested in crime and drug addiction but after substantial ethnographic research turned their attention toward the mechanisms of deviance creation and the labeling process (Becker, 1963). Lemert (1962) made the distinction between 'primary' and 'secondary' deviance; the former having only marginal implications for the individual concerned and the latter relating to the ascription by others of a socially devalued status and identity. Secondary deviance becomes a central facet of existence for those so labeled, 'altering psychic structure' producing specialized social roles for self-management.
INTRO TO SOCIOLOGY 5
Impairment. Disability and Handicap
Throughout this period other writers stuck to a more conventional approach. Haber and Smith (1971), for example, argued that we should focus rather on the elaboration of behavioral alternatives within existing role relationships rather than the proliferation of 'specialized role repertoires'. In this way the behavior of disabled people is effectively 'normalized' as adaptation. But normalization for most sociologists has meant that disability can be subsumed within the category 'chronic

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