Disability Pride Month

Every year in July, Disability Pride Month celebrates persons who experience disability, their identities and culture, and their positive contributions to society. The event aims to change the way people think about disability. It promotes all types of disability as a natural part of human diversity. Learn more.

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Against technoableism : rethinking who needs improvement

Against technoableism : rethinking who needs improvement

Shew, Ashley, 1983- author
2023

"When bioethicist and professor Ashley Shew became a self-described "hard-of-hearing chemobrained amputee with Crohn's disease and tinnitus," there was no returning to "normal." Suddenly well-meaning people called her an "inspiration" while grocery shopping or viewed her as a needy recipient of technological wizardry. Most disabled people don't want what the abled assume they want -- nor are they generally asked. Almost everyone will experience disability at some point in their lives, yet the abled persistently frame disability as an individual's problem rather than a social one. In a warm, feisty voice and vibrant prose, Shew shows how we can create better narratives and more accessible futures by drawing from the insights of the cross-disability community. To forge a more equitable world, Shew argues that we must eliminate "technoableism" -- the harmful belief that technology is a "solution" for disability; that the disabled simply await being "fixed" by technological wizardry; that making society more accessible and equitable is somehow a lesser priority. This badly needed introduction to disability expertise considers mobility devices, medical infrastructure, neurodivergence, and the crucial relationship between disability and race. The future, Shew points out, is surely disabled -- whether through changing climate, new diseases, or even through space travel. It's time we looked closely at how we all think about disability technologies and learn to envision disabilities not as liabilities, but as skill sets enabling all of us to navigate a challenging world."--Provided by publisher.

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Being Heumann : an unrepentant memoir of a disability rights activist

Being Heumann : an unrepentant memoir of a disability rights activist

Heumann, Judith E., author
2020

"One of the most influential disability rights activists in US history tells her personal story of fighting for the right to receive an education, have a job, and just be human. A story of fighting to belong in a world that wasn't built for all of us and of one woman's activism--from the streets of Brooklyn and San Francisco to inside the halls of Washington--Being Heumann recounts Judy Heumann's lifelong battle to achieve respect, acceptance, and inclusion in society."-- Provided by publisher.

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Being seen : one deafblind woman's fight to end ableism

Being seen : one deafblind woman's fight to end ableism

Sjunneson, Elsa, 1985- author
2021

A deafblind writer and professor explores how the misrepresentation of disability in books, movies, and TV harms both the disabled community and everyone else.

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Beryl : the making of a disability activist

Beryl : the making of a disability activist

Galer, Dustin, 1983- author
2023

Beryl Potter was a reserved working-class mother of three living a decent life, or so it seemed, when a harmless slip and fall marked the unravelling of everything that she had known about herself and the world around her. Over the course of six years, she endured unimaginable pain. As doctors raced to save her life, her limbs and eyesight were taken from her one by one. In the span of a few years, she lost nearly half her body, her financial security, her home, her husband, and any semblance of a recognizable future. A survivor of more than one hundred surgeries, a dangerous opioid addiction, and multiple suicide attempts, Beryl Potter devoted herself to bettering the lives of other people with disabilities and made a tremendous contribution to disability awareness from the 1970s to 1990s. In this unparalleled biography, Dustin Galer demonstrates how Beryl Potter seemed to crack the code of the social system that oppressed her. By wading into the weeds of her complicated life before and after her accident, Galer leaves readers with a complex portrait of a woman who defied and challenged gender and disability norms of her time, paving the way for disability justice.

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But everyone feels this way : how an autism diagnosis saved my life

But everyone feels this way : how an autism diagnosis saved my life

Layle, Paige, author.
2024

Autism acceptance activist and TikTok influencer Paige Layle shares her deeply personal journey to diagnosis and living life autistically. "For far too long, I was told I was just like everyone else. But knew it couldn't be true. Living just seemed so much harder for me. This wasn't okay. This wasn't normal. This wasn't functioning. And it certainly wasn't fine." Paige Layle was normal. She lived in the countryside with her mom, dad, and brother Graham. She went to school, hung out with friends, and all the while everything seemed so much harder than it needed to be. A break in routine threw off the whole day. If her teacher couldn't answer "why" in class, she dissolved into tears, unable to articulate her own confusion or explain her lack of control. But Paige was normal. She smiled in photos, picked her feet up when her mom needed to vacuum instead of fleeing the room, and earned high grades. She had friends and loved to perform in local theater productions. It wasn't until a psychiatrist said she wasn't doing okay, that anyone believed her. In But Everyone Feels This Way, Paige Layle shares her story as an autistic woman diagnosed late. Armed with the phrase "Autism Spectrum Disorder" (ASD), Paige challenges stigmas, taboos, and stereotypes while learning how to live her authentic, autistic life.

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The country of the blind : a memoir at the end of sight

The country of the blind : a memoir at the end of sight

Leland, Andrew.
2023

"A witty, winning, and revelatory personal narrative of the author's transition from sightedness to blindness and his quest to learn all he can about blindness as a distinct and rich culture all its own. We meet Andrew Leland as he's suspended in the strange liminal state of the soon-to-be blind: He's midway through his life with retinitis pigmentosa, a condition that ushers those who live with it from complete sightedness to complete blindness over a period of years, even decades. He grew up with full vision, but starting in his teenage years, his sight began to degrade from the outside in, such that he now sees the world as if through a narrow tube. Soon-but without knowing exactly when-he will likely have no vision left. Full of apprehension but also dogged curiosity, Leland embarks on a sweeping exploration of the state of being that awaits him: not only the physical experience of blindness but also its language, internal debates, politics, and customs. He also negotiates his changing relationships with his wife and son, and with his own sense of self, as he moves from sighted to semi-sighted to blind, from his mainstream, "typical" life to one with a disability. Part memoir, part historical and cultural investigation, The Country of the Blind represents Leland's determination not to merely survive this transition, but to grow from it-to seek out and revel in that which makes blindness enlightening. His story reveals essential lessons for all of us, from accepting uncertainty and embracing change to connecting with others across difference. Thought-provoking and brimming with warmth and humor, The Country of the Blind is at once a deeply personal journey and an intellectually exhilarating tour of a way of being that most of us have never paused to consider-and from which we have much to learn"-- Provided by publisher.

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Deaf utopia : a memoir--and a love letter to a way of life

Deaf utopia : a memoir--and a love letter to a way of life

DiMarco, Nyle, 1989- author
2022

Before becoming the actor, producer, advocate, and model that people know today, Nyle DiMarco was half of a pair of Deaf twins born to a multi-generational Deaf family in Queens, New York. Nyle shares stories, both heartbreaking and humorous, of what it means to navigate a world built for hearing people. This is more than a memoir, it is a cultural anthem - a proud and defiant song of Deaf culture and a love letter to American Sign Language, Nyle's primary language.

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Disability visibility : first-person stories from the twenty-first century

Disability visibility : first-person stories from the twenty-first century

2020

A groundbreaking collection of first-person writing on the joys and challenges of the modern disability experience: Disability Visibility brings together the voices of activists, authors, lawyers, politicians, artists, and everyday people whose daily lives are, in the words of playwright Neil Marcus, "an art ... an ingenious way to live." According to the last census, one in five people in the United States lives with a disability. Some are visible, some are hidden--but all are underrepresented in media and popular culture. Now, just in time for the thirtieth anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, activist Alice Wong brings together an urgent, galvanizing collection of personal essays by contemporary disabled writers. There is Harriet McBryde Johnson's "Unspeakable Conversations," which describes her famous debate with Princeton philosopher Peter Singer over her own personhood. There is columnist s. e. smith's celebratory review of a work of theater by disabled performers. There are original pieces by up-and-coming authors like Keah Brown and Haben Girma. There are blog posts, manifestos, eulogies, and testimonies to Congress. Taken together, this anthology gives a glimpse of the vast richness and complexity of the disabled experience, highlighting the passions, talents, and everyday lives of this community. It invites readers to question their own assumptions and understandings. It celebrates and documents disability culture in the now. It looks to the future and past with hope and love

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Easy beauty : a memoir

Easy beauty : a memoir

Cooper Jones, Chloé, 1983- author
2022

Moving through the world in a body that looks different than most, Jones learned early on to factor "pain calculations" into every plan, every situation. She was born with a rare congenital condition called sacral agenesis, which affects both the stature and gait, and so her pain is physical. But there is also the pain of being judged and pitied for her appearance, of being dismissed as "less than." The way she has been seen--or not seen--has informed her lens on the world for her entire life... But after unexpectedly becoming a mother (in violation of unspoken social taboos about the disabled body), she feels something in her shift, and Jones sets off on a journey across the globe, reclaiming the spaces she'd been denied and had denied herself.

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A face for Picasso : coming of age with Crouzon syndrome

A face for Picasso : coming of age with Crouzon syndrome

Henley, Ariel, 1991- author
2021

"A YA nonfiction story about Ariel and her twin sister's experience living with Crouzon Syndrome"--Provided by publisher.

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Fractured : a memoir

Fractured : a memoir

Mockler, Susan, author
2022


The future is disabled : prophecies, love notes, and mourning songs

The future is disabled : prophecies, love notes, and mourning songs

Piepzna-Samarasinha, Leah Lakshmi, 1975- author.
2022

"In The Future Is Disabled, Leah Laksmi Piepzna-Samarasinha asks some provocative questions: What if, in the near future, the majority of people will be disabled - and what if that's not a bad thing? And what if disability justice and disabled wisdom are crucial to creating a future in which it's possible to survive fascism, climate change, and pandemics and to bring about liberation? Building on the work of their game-changing book Care Work: Dreaming Disability Justice, Piepzna-Samarasinha writes about disability justice at the end of the world, documenting the many ways disabled people kept and are keeping each other - and the rest of the world - alive during Trump, fascism and the COVID-19 pandemic. Other subjects include crip interdependence, care and mutual aid in real life, disabled community building, and disabled art practice as survival and joy. Written over the course of two years of disabled isolation during the pandemic, this is a book of love letters to other disabled QTBIPOC (and those concerned about disability justice, the care crisis, and surviving the apocalypse); honour songs for kin who are gone; recipes for survival; questions and real talk about care, organizing, disabled families, and kin networks and communities; and wild brown disabled femme joy in the face of death. With passion and power, The Future Is Disabled remembers our dead and insists on our future."-- Provided by publisher.

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Haben : the deafblind woman who conquered Harvard Law

Haben : the deafblind woman who conquered Harvard Law

Girma, Haben, 1988- author
2019

Girma grew up with her family in the Eritrean city of Asmara during Eritrea's thirty-year war with Ethiopia. Defining her disability as an opportunity for innovation, she learned non-visual techniques for everything from dancing salsa to handling an electric saw. She developed a text-to-braille communication system that created a new way to connect with people. Pioneering her way through obstacles, Girma graduated from Harvard Law, and now uses her talents to advocate for people with disabilities. This is a testament to her determination to find the keys to connection. -- Adapted from jacket.

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Heart berries : a memoir

Heart berries : a memoir

Mailhot, Terese Marie, author
2018

Guileless and refreshingly honest, Terese Mailhot's debut memoir chronicles her struggle to balance the beauty of her Native heritage with the often desperate and chaotic reality of life on the reservation. Hometown: The Seabird Island Band, B.C.

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Leg : the story of a limb and the boy who grew from it : a memoir

Leg : the story of a limb and the boy who grew from it : a memoir

Marshall, Greg (Essayist), author
2023

In a hilarious and heartfelt memoir, the author shares outrageous stories of a singular childhood and his coming out of two closets--as a gay man and as a man living with cerebral palsy--examining what it means to transform when there are parts of yourself that cannot be changed.

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Not fade away : a memoir of senses lost and found

Not fade away : a memoir of senses lost and found

Alexander, Rebecca (Psychotherapist), author
2014


The pretty one : on life, pop culture, disability, and other reasons to fall in love with me

The pretty one : on life, pop culture, disability, and other reasons to fall in love with me

Brown, Keah, author
2019

"From the disability rights advocate and creator of the #DisabledAndCute viral campaign, a thoughtful, inspiring, and charming collection of essays exploring what it means to be black and disabled in a mostly able-bodied white America. Keah Brown loves herself, but that hadn't always been the case. Born with cerebral palsy, her greatest desire used to be normalcy and refuge from the steady stream of self-hate society strengthened inside her. But after years of introspection and reaching out to others in her community, she has reclaimed herself and changed her perspective. In The Pretty One, Brown gives a contemporary and relatable voice to the disabled -- so often portrayed as mute, weak, or isolated. With clear, fresh, and light-hearted prose, these essays explore everything from her relationship with her able-bodied identical twin (called 'the pretty one' by friends) to navigating romance; her deep affinity for all things pop culture--and her disappointment with the media's distorted view of disability; and her declaration of self-love with the viral hashtag #DisabledAndCute. By 'smashing stigmas, empowering her community, and celebrating herself' (Teen Vogue), Brown and The Pretty One aims to expand the conversation about disability and inspire self-love for people of all backgrounds"-- Provided by publisher.

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Sitting pretty : the view from my ordinary resilient disabled body

Sitting pretty : the view from my ordinary resilient disabled body

Taussig, Rebekah, author
2020

Growing up as a paralyzed girl during the 90s and early 2000s, Rebekah Taussig only saw disability depicted as something monstrous, inspirational, or angelic. None of this felt right. Writing about the rhythms and textures of what it means to live in a body that doesn't fit, Rebekah reflects on everything from the complications of kindness and charity, living both independently and dependently, experiencing intimacy, and how the pervasiveness of ableism in our everyday media directly translates to everyday life.

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Strangers assume my girlfriend is my nurse

Strangers assume my girlfriend is my nurse

Burcaw, Shane, author.
2019

"With his signature acerbic wit and hilarious voice, twenty-something author, blogger, and entrepreneur Shane Burcaw is back with an essay collection about living a full life in a body that many people perceive as a tragedy. From anecdotes about first introductions where people patted him on the head instead of shaking his hand, to stories of passersby mistaking his able-bodied girlfriend for a nurse, Shane tackles awkward situations and assumptions with humor and grace. On the surface, these essays are about day-to-day life as a wheelchair user with a degenerative disease, but they are actually about family, love, and coming of age."-- Amazon.

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Unstoppable : women with disabilities

Unstoppable : women with disabilities

Wolfe, Helen, 1953-2022 author.
2021

Around the world, people living with disabilities face barriers in the built environment, in employment and education, and in social attitudes and policies that can make it hard to live a full and satisfying life. The ten women we meet in this book face physical and mental health challenges, some from birth and some who became disabled later in life. But they all share the determination to make the world a better place, not just for themselves but for those who will come after them.

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What doesn't kill you : a life with chronic illness-lessons from a body in revolt

What doesn't kill you : a life with chronic illness-lessons from a body in revolt

Miller, Tessa, 1988- author.
2021

"A riveting and candid account of a young journalist's awakening to a life of chronic illness, weaving together her personal story with reporting to shed light on how Americans live with long-term diagnoses today."-- Provided by publisher.

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What my bones know : a memoir of healing from complex trauma

What my bones know : a memoir of healing from complex trauma

Foo, Stephanie, author
2023

"A searing memoir of reckoning and healing from an acclaimed journalist and former This American Life producer investigating the little-understood science behind Complex PTSD and how it has shaped her life. By age thirty, Stephanie Foo was successful on paper: She had her dream job as a radio producer at This American Life and had won an Emmy. But behind her office door she was having panic attacks and sobbing at her desk. After years of questioning what was wrong with her, she was diagnosed with Complex PTSD-a condition that occurs when trauma happens continuously, over the course of years. Both of Stephanie's parents had abandoned her as a teenager after years of physical and verbal abuse and neglect. She thought she'd overcome her trauma, but her diagnosis illuminated the ways in which her past continued to threaten her health, her relationships, and her career. Finding few resources to help her heal, Stephanie set out to map her experience onto the scarce scientific research on C-PTSD. In this deeply personal and thoroughly researched account, Stephanie interviews scientists and psychologists and tries a variety of innovative therapies with the determination and curiosity of an award-winning journalist. She returns to her hometown of San Jose, California, to investigate the effects of immigrant trauma on a community, she uncovers family secrets in the country of her birth, Malaysia, and learns how trauma can be inherited through generations. Ultimately, she discovers that you don't move on from trauma-but you can learn to move with it, with grace and joy."-- Provided by publisher.

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Year of the tiger : an activist's life

Year of the tiger : an activist's life

Wong, Alice, 1974- author
2022

Drawing on a collection of original essays, previously published work, conversations, graphics, photos, commissioned art by disabled and Asian American artists, and more, Alice uses her unique talent to share an impressionistic scrapbook of her life as an Asian American disabled activist, community organizer, media maker, and dreamer. From her love of food and pop culture to her unwavering commitment to dismantling systemic ableism, Alice shares her thoughts on creativity, access, power, care, the pandemic, mortality, and the future. As a self-described disabled oracle, Alice traces her origins, tells her story, and creates a space for disabled people to be in conversation with one another and the world. Filled with incisive wit, joy, and rage, Wong's Year of the Tiger will galvanize readers with big cat energy.

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