?

Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Entry | Next Entry

I was all excited to read Memoir of a Debulked Woman, Susan Gubar's account of her diagnosis and treatment for advanced ovarian cancer. Since Gubar is a noted feminist literary critic, I expected a powerful combination of personal details and polemic yielding a strong, thought-provoking critique of the medical industrial complex.

I did not expect gratuitous similes about people with disabilities. At least twice in the half of the book that I read [before throwing it across the room in disgust], Gubar compares her social withdrawal and disinclination to talk about her condition to having autism.

NO! Your social withdrawal and disinclination is NOT like having autism, Susan Gubar. More accurately, your social withdrawal and disclination to talk about your condition correspond to your personal stereotype [also a cultural stereotype at large] of how autistic people act in social situations.

In any case, please shut up. You are not like a person who has autism. Only people with autism are like people who have autism. And do I need to remind you that people with autism are actual, real people, as opposed to fodder for your literary flourishes?

While I'm on the same subject, people need to stop using "blind," "deaf," "crippled" and other words that refer to people with disabilities as metaphors. No, in fact, you're not "blind" to the obstacles facing you or "deaf" to criticism and therefore "crippled" by your inability to heed advice. You may be inattentive to obstacles, heedless of criticism and therefore challenged by your inability to heed advice, so use the right words, rather than ones that don't belong to you.

Also, everybody, stop using any form of the word "lame" to refer to something that you think is pathetic, insignificant, not good enough, unconvincing, etc. Look at how many synonyms I just listed in the preceding sentence! Pick one of them instead, not a term that shows how horribly prejudiced you are against people with disabilities.

Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Dana Cooper
Jul. 9th, 2012 11:25 pm (UTC)
Good post, MW! Have to confess, I have been guilty of using blind and dumb at times. Thoughtlessness is no excuse. Thanks for this reminder.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )

Profile

blogofstench
Blog of Eternal Stench
Love Has Fangs

Latest Month

March 2015
S M T W T F S
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031    

Tags

Page Summary

Powered by LiveJournal.com
Designed by Tiffany Chow