The 25th Annual Conference
“Collaborations, Cultures, and Communities”
June 20 – 23, 2012, Denver, CO USA
Hosted by the Denver Agency for Human Rights and Community Partnership, the Denver Office for Disability Rights and the Denver Commission for People with Disabilities.
The terms “collaborations”, “cultures”, and “communities” express many meanings on many different levels, ranging from the most intimate personal and familial relations to the broadest global and virtual arrangements. With this year’s theme, we seek to challenge potential presenters to explore the rich and varied ways in which people with disabilities are shaped by and in turn form their own collaborations, communities, and cultures. At the same time, we must also be mindful of the ways in which the larger, nondisabled population has – through common, dominant cultures and collaborations of power – worked both to exclude and to include disabled people in community and cultural formation and development. In addition, we hope presenters will explore the ways in which disabled people themselves have sometimes restricted access to their own communities and cultures and worked to form limited collaborations with one another. We believe that this is a time for members of SDS to consider the many ways in which we might strengthen our communities and express our dynamic cultures by recognizing not only our many commonalities, but also our tremendous and incredibly valuable diversity. Our hope is that this year’s theme will encourage members to foster spaces that value diverse expressions and analyses of class, race, gender, sexuality, sub-culture and national status within SDS and the broader communities of people with disabilities.
The Society for Disability Studies (SDS) is a scholarly organization that is dedicated to the cause of promoting the disability studies as an academic discipline. According to SDS’s Mission Statement, “through research, artistic production, teaching and activism, the Society for Disability Studies seeks to augment understanding of disability in all cultures and historical periods, to promote greater awareness of the experiences of disabled people, and to advocate for social change.”
More than twenty-five years of rich history has enabled the organization to reach national and international members with expertise ranging from advocacy to perspectives on disability from variety of disciplines. Such expertise are often at display at SDS’s annual conference, where hundreds of participants gather every year to share latest research and theory. Members also engage in vibrant discussions on member-only electronic lists with participation ranging from some of the most senior scholars in the field to rising graduate student stars.