Susan Wendell's The Social Construction Of Disability

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In “The Social Construction of Disability,” Susan Wendell briefly discusses how the fast pace of American life impacts the social construction of disability through an inability for people with “disabilities” to maintain expectations of a high-performance level. Wendell also claims that the pace of life causes disability in many people’s lives, but quickly moves on to another topic, referencing chapter four of Barbara Hillyer’s Feminism and Disability in the footnotes as a place for more information on this argument. In Hillyer’s chapter “Productivity and Pace,” she writes to the feminist and disability communities, analyzing how the pace of life affects them both in similar ways. Through an analysis of how people with disabilities are forced to set their own daily pace, Hillyer hopes to encourage others to learn about the necessity of slowing down. Throughout the chapter, Hillyer argues that people with disabilities are forced to act in a slow manner that is …show more content…

People with disabilities and their caretakers are stigmatized for not being able to keep up, but they are not viewed as not having a “real” disability if they are too productive. Instead of viewing this as a symptom for their disease or disability, Hillyer believes this is a healthier way of living, and she encourages her readers to adopt similar techniques for managing their responsibilities. She especially criticizes the unrealistic, fast-paced speed that women are expected to maintain, despite personal obstacles. Hillyer, having lived in the intersection between the feminist and disability communities for most of her life, emphasizes the importance of allowing women to abandon the traditional concept of a highly productive “superwoman” and instead replace it with the knowledge that every woman dealing with a disease or disability, in themselves or loved ones, is a

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