As announced previously, on Friday October 23 at 5 PM, Rosemarie Garland-Thomson will deliver the inaugural GW English Distinguished Lecture in Literary and Cultural Studies. She will be introduced by Wang Visiting Professor of Contemporary English Literature José Muñoz. GW President Steven Knapp will give the university welcome.
Professor Garland-Thomson is a founder of Disability Studies, an interdisciplinary approach to literature and culture that examines (among many other things) how the normal is created, and who is excluded from that category.
Her talk will be entitled The Gas Chamber and the Metro: Space, Mobility, and Disability. She will explore a contradiction in contemporary American culture between the political/architectural initiative to integrate people with disabilities into the public sphere through creating an accessible, barrier-free built environment and the medical/technological initiative to eliminate people with disabilities from the human community. She will do so by enlisting built space to exemplify a particular cultural understanding of disability.