The Capability Imperative: Revealing Ableism in Medical Education:
“The movement to diversify medical education recognizes that various perspectives and life experiences enrich medical training, practice, and patient care. However, students with disabilities remain underrepresented in medical education and face barriers in structure, culture, and climate. Efforts to remedy exclusion have focused on bettering accommodation policy and practice.
This presentation draws from a constructivist grounded theory of four U.S. medical schools that asked: how is disability inclusion enacted in medical education? Amongst other things, the study shows that inclusion was informed by the capability imperative, a context-specific manifestation of ableism that upholds a cultural logic of compulsory hyper-ablebodiedness and mindedness. I describe this logic and argue that it renders disabled students’ misfits in medical education. Their inclusion is constrained, always exceptional. To be truly inclusive of diverse bodyminds, the capability imperative must be interrogated and dismantled.”
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