wolbring

Two different discourses: Body identity and cause of disablement


Unfortunately we use the term disability for two different discourses: one that describes the body and one that engages with the cause of disablement.

Three possible combinations of the two discourses are possible.

  1. medical/ deficiency of the body can be paired with a disablement understanding that sees the body as the originator of the disablement (e.g. Cancer patient that sees parts of their body as defective and sees the body as causing the disablement and seeks medical treatment)
  2.   medical/ deficiency of the body can be paired with a disablement understanding that sees the physical and social environment as the originator of the disablement (e.g. Cancer patient that sees parts of their body as defective and identifies social disablement such as lack of access to treatment, discriminatory treatment at the workplace  and seeks social remedy)
  3.   non-deficiency understanding of the body can be paired with a disablement understanding  that sees the physical and social environment as the originator of the disablement (e.g. Deaf culture sees their lack of hearing not as a deficiency but sees themselves experiencing social disablement; sexism, racism… are based on seeing the body as a variation and that people with certain variations experience social disablement

In the end the question is who has the power to label the body and to decide where the disablement originates. The problem is that ‘others’ often define ones label which might not be in sync with the person’s views. Furthermore as the public discussions go they leave the impression that its medical or social disablement. However even if one defines ones body as deficient one can still experience medical and social disablement.  Again the issue is that powerful others are fast in pushing a narrative that blames the body for the disablement and not the physical/social environment.

Now so far the above played itself out within the dichotomy species-typical/sub species-typical. However given the ever increasing demand and vision for human enhancement the above discourses will change, by adding the option of seeing the species-typical as deficient. Below are various combinations for the cause of disablement and the body image.

 Causes of disablement

There is a debate as to what causes disablement. There are various options

Medical model of Disability

People disabled by their body-structure related sub species-typical functioning

Social model of disability

People disabled by the attitudinal and
environmental barriers they experience due to their body-structure related sub species-typical functioning that hinder their full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others

Transhumanized medical model of disability

People disabled by their body structure related -‘as impaired labelled’- sub species-typical and species-typical functioning (everyone not performing beyond species-typical functioning).

Transhumanized social model of disability

People disabled by the attitudinal and environmental barriers they experience due to their body-structure related sub species-typical and species-typical functioning that hinder their full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others

The BODY IMAGE

Impairment/medical deficiency model of the body/body image

A body that is labelled to function sub species- typical

Transhumanized version of Impairment/medical deficiency model of the body/body image

A body that is labelled to function sub species- typical and species-typical

Vari-ability/ability diverse/ non medical/non deficiency model of the body/body image

A vari-ability in bodily functioning that differs from the species-typical norm but does not exceed the species-typical norm and is seen as a variation and not a deviation

Transhumanized understanding of Variability/ non medical/non deficiency model of the body/body image

 

 

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