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A Privileged Bodymind: The Entanglement of Ableism and Capitalism

IJED, Vol. 12 No. 1, (2018)

When identifying and addressing the causes and consequences of ableism, it is necessary to consider capitalistic influences. When considering the inequalities produced or perpetuated by capitalism, it is necessary to consider ableism. Central to this connection are knowledge production systems that favor certain bodyminds and means of production. From these systems emerge both knowledge claims about ideal bodyminds as well as material artifacts and other technologies reproducing these claims. While the context of our argument is primarily that of the United States, it is our opinion that the linkages between ableism and capitalism have critical import elsewhere. Additionally, the application of anarchist thought to the ableist-capitalist relationship helps advance incisive critiques rooted in social constructionism and the interrogation of inequities rooted in a shared knowledge inheritance. This perspective piece aims not to be prescriptive, but to highlight oppressive linkages heretofore relegated to afterthought.

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