Defining disability up and down: The problem of “normality.”

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
J. David Smith, Professor, Department Chair (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: In 1993 an article that has become a classic in public policy was published in The American Scholar. In this essay, U.S. Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan discussed the ways through which behaviors that have been considered deviant subsequently come to be accepted by society. In “Defining Deviancy Down,” Moynihan asserted that these behaviors were being ignored, tolerated, or even normalized. His examples included the deinstitutionalization of people previously considered incapable of community living, the increased presence of homeless people on the streets of American cities, various changes in the acceptance of diverse sexual behavior, and differences in the meaning of marriage and family in the United States.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2008
developmental disabilities, public policy, normality, cultural practices, disability definitions

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