Alice Hall, Literature and Disability

Alice Hall's Literature and Disability is a slim paperback with a red cover and orange and white lettering. A stylized image of an eyeball augments the text.
Alice Hall’s Literature and Disability was published in 2016 by Routledge

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Encountering the Text

Shifting from early modern texts to contemporary scholarship, we offered this selection from Alice Hall’s 2016 Literature and Disability as a useful overview of trends in the field that has come to be known as “literary disability studies.” In this short selection, Hall traces a theoretical genealogy for the study of disability in literature, and highlights a few methodological cruxes. 

  • A tidy timeline can have the effect of flattening out messiness and debate. Are there places where Hall’s narrative about the emerging field of literary disability studies might be missing parts of this history that feel important to you or in your work? 
  • Hall’s discussion briefly touches upon several of the most foundational texts and concepts in disability studies (constructing normalcy, narrative prosthesis, etc). Would it have been better for us to select an excerpt directly from one of these sources in place of this type of summative discussion? Why or why not?