Disability activisms: social model stalwarts and biological citizens

Bill Hughes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

66 Citations (Scopus)


The Disabled People's Movement (DPM) in the UK rejects the view that disability is an illness. For the DPM it is the social processes of discrimination and oppression that create the material circumstances out of which solidarity and politicisation arise. The DPM has also been shy about impairment, arguing that it is generally irrelevant to the issue of disability and that a clear distinction between impairment and disability is necessary if disability is to be understood as a basis for identity politics. The biological citizens that support embodied health movements use impairment, genetic status, biomedical diagnosis and classification as calling cards that signal their claims to identity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)677-688
Number of pages12
JournalDisability and Society
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2009


  • social movement
  • sociology
  • disability activisms


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