Your Feedback: Disability Studies, Travel, and Justice

If I were to lead the workshop on Tourism & Social Justice today - instead of Friday June 17 at the Society for Disability Studies Conference in San Jose I might begin it with this exercise:

I had a specific intent in proposing this gathering as a workshop rather than a presentation. My intent is to persuade some of you to join the speaking circuit in the area of disability and tourism. It seemed to me that the best way to start you down that slippery slope was to engage you in reflecting on your own travel experience but to have you place that in context of the questions that you ask as a disability scholar.

Think back on whatever disability studies article, review, book, syllabus, or debate you just left back home. Now consider everything involved in the trip you just made here to San Jose, California. Do the two experiences inform each other in any way?  Does anything you experienced in the process of getting to this place and time fit into a model or a pattern you have been using to frame your writing on disability? Was there a certain person or point in the process of travel where greater knowledge of what you know through your work could have improved the experience for you? For other travelers who experiences disabilities?

There you go. You have slipped down the slope! Whatever came to mind as I posed those questions can become the heart of your workshop or a presentation in the growing portfolio of events covering the interface of disability and travel.

Next let's take a look at the literature - how others have been framing their questions, who they are addressing them to, and finally where are some upcoming venues for you to speak.


Not everyone who has something important to say on the topic will be able to attend the conference yet there does not seem to be a public way to asynchronously participate. The essence of Universal Design requires participation by the broadest range of users under the broadest range of conditions. So it seems only consistent with the philosophy of participatory justice, upon which Universal Design (and thus Inclusive Tourism) is based, to use this post as a mechanism for participation during the workshop's design phase.

Take to heart the challenge above. Respond with a comment, a YouTube post, or a private email to me at srains AT oco Dot net.


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