Here They Come!: the 37th edition of the Disability Blog Carnival

The words carnival and disability together brings many images to mind. Images of freakshows, disability being manipulated, and all kinds of hard times for disabled people are thought of. Here we are though, in 2008, reclaiming and recycling these words together to mean something new. This disability blog carnival, the 37th one of its kind, focuses on the celebration of disability culture, struggle, people, history and identity. Put your party hats on— we’re ready to get started!

“I think it was perhaps the most important thing that happened to me. It formed me, guided me, instructed me, helped me, humiliated me, all those things at once. I’ve never gotten over it, and I am aware of the force and power of it.”
—Dorethea Lange on disability

ThinkFreestyle tells us why disability culture is important to her as a disabled Latina while honoring a friend who traveled alongside her in her journey to community. Solitaire Miles shares with us both a beautiful self-portrait and her difficult experience as a disabled person in the entertainment industry. Wheelchair Dancer writes beautifully about how identity is part practice, part culture while Big Noise taps into collective power through pride. Astrid dissects disability culture and asks whether people can rightfully have a disability identity when being excluded from the disability community.
Bladyblog bravely ponders his disability identity and talks about living on the margins of queer and disability identity groups. Fibrofog does a wonderful job also on this topic and talks about how we can not have a single-issue system of justice and expect change.

Baraka describes her disability as a second husband, someone who takes energy from her, while Wheelie Catholic tells us what she doesn’t miss about her pre-quad body. Paula and Tokah both talk about how disability identity sometimes clashes with the other parts of them (and both come up with really cool terms—Paula “cripeleptic” and Tokah “the chippy martyr”). Kay at The Gimp Parade writes about the complicated all-encompassing [inclusive] nature of the disability community. Ettina talks about disability identity as the differences between you and nondisabled people, not labels. Ettina also covers intellectual and developmental disability stereotypes and how her life fits into them. Estee, at the Joy of Autism blog, also talks about difference and how it is not a deficiency [something lacking]. Shiloh also writes about disability being a part of her and even includes an acrostic poem!

Cheryl tells us what life is like when society tells you are lacking in culture or community and makes her own definitions of disability (hint: creativity! Being resourceful!). Terri tells us what she wants— pride, respect, group accountability for ableism, and acceptance. (Check out her list for more.) Mik Danger, one of my favorite bloggers, tells us why people should ally with the disability community and how movements feed each other. Dark Angel radically defies stereotypes with her beautiful queer, blind, pagan, goth self. Matt speculates why people with disabilities are often excluded from houses of worship. Shiva and Trinity and both talk about the politics of passing [hiding your identity] in a very personal way. Trin says “I wasn’t passing. I was telling myself I passed because I couldn’t stomach the idea that maybe I didn’t, that maybe my disability was something that really did affect how people saw me and thought of me and interacted with me.” Shiva says: ”The problem with “passing” and “stealth”, when it comes to liberation movements, is that it’s essentially an individualistic way of seeking one’s own safety, freedom or place in society by moving out of an oppressed or marginalized group, which inevitably compromises one’s ability to fight for the rights of that whole group”.

Pitt Rehab tells us that, with his spinal cord injury, some days he does not feel disabled while other days his life screams disability. Lauredhel tells us how disability impacts day-to-day routines, like going to the doctor. After some seizures and TIAs, Elizabeth McClung writes in with an emotionally raw post and a letter to herself reminding her who she is. Annaham shares with us a self-portrait where she has needles poking every part of her body but still has her fist raised. David shares his painful experience of hearing a disability slur in a safe space. Perennial Sam shares her first blog post ever with us, one that describes the nature of her mental health disability. Yanub, author of Yet Another Never Updated blog (lol), also writes about the nature of her disability and her journey with it. Amandaw tells us of the way she reluctantly [slowly, unsurely] uses the word “Disabled” and her reasons for it. gives us a Hymes asks us a series of questions around how she is treated as a person with a psychiatric disability.

Elizabeth explains why it isn’t autism that she wants cured but rather neurotypicality [the idea that everyone has to think, behave, and communicate in the same way]. Pocochina writes about her struggle with accepting disability and figuring out if she is a part of the community. Zan at Butterfly Cauldron writes about the need for grieving over the changes in one’s body and life because of disability. Verlidaine talks about the “why you” stare when she calls out ableism. Athena and Ivan talk about the ups and downs of disability or autistic pride and the need to sometimes be guarded about disclosing [letting people know] their disability.

Three new websites were shared with us during this carnival: Endeavor Freedom, a networking site for disability activists and everyday people, Feminist Mental Health UK, a group blog focused on mental health issues, and Hows Your News, a fun media site about a group of disabled people making their mark on pop culture!

Julia also shared a fierce poem inspired by Frida Kahlo. Though I was not able to access it because I don’t have an Endeavor Freedom password (yet!), it is Comment #33 on this thread.

Whew! Quite a carnival! If you haven’t had time to post yet, feel free to keep sending your posts this way and add to the dialogue!

A special thank-you goes to Penny who, from my 5 second internet research, has been working on the carnival since September 2006. Many props and thanks also go to the 40 bloggers who put a lot of thought into their posts and submitted them and/or were found out (grin) by Penny at the Disability Studies Temple Univ. blog.

The next blog carnival will be at Ryn Tales on the 22nd so be sure to visit over there and find out more.

Again, please feel free to keep submitting!


Filed under ableism, abolishing medical and charity models of thinking, community, disability, i love my people, identity, internal change, intersections, links, Uncategorized, writing/poetry

35 responses to “Here They Come!: the 37th edition of the Disability Blog Carnival

  1. if any links are broken or you submitted something that isn’t here, PLEASE let me know. ❤

  2. Pingback: Alas, a blog » Blog Archive » Check out the 37th edition of the Disability Blog Carnival

  3. Thanks for all your work putting this together – powerful.

  4. Thanks for the carnival! *bookmarks*

    Just one note – I’m lauredhel, not Laura. Thanks!


    I haven’t done much on identity, but this post from almost a year ago is unfortunately just as relevant to my experience as a person identified with a psychiatric disability today.

  6. This is truly the grandest disability blog carnival yet! Between this and BADD, I will be waaaaaaay behind on my must read blogs for weeks!

  7. Pingback: Links 5-8-08 « Aaminah Hernández

  8. I used similar words to explain a blog carnival in my May 5 post. Enter the Assistive Technology Blog Carnival through TherExtras.

  9. pennylrichardsca

    You’re welcome, and yeah! Any excuse to wear a party hat first thing in the morning makes me very happy.

    Just a note that the theme of the next edition, hosted at Ryn Tales, is “spirituality and disability.”

  10. I can’t wait to get home tonight and dig in to this list. I love disability bloggers! You are all making me a better person. Thanks

  11. Pingback: ~* Writings of a Wheelchair Princess *~

  12. Pingback: Disability Blog Carnival #37 Is Up at misscripchick’s Weblog « Charlottesville Prejudice And Civil Rights Watch

  13. Pingback: Mamita Mala - One Bad Mami › The 37th edition of the Disability Blog Carnival

  14. Pingback: The 37th edition of the Disability Blog Carnival at THIS IS NOT MY COUNTRY

  15. Thank you cripchick for holding this carnival and allowing so many of us to be involved! I have already read some of the entries and they are wonderful. Would you mind if I add you to my BlogRoll? 🙂

  16. i’d be honored perennial sam : )

  17. Thanks for putting together a wonderful carnival!

  18. Thanks – you’re the first other blogger I’ll have a link to!

  19. a new blogger bladyblog just submitted to the carnival too:

  20. I finally wrote something I’d been struggling to find words for, that I tried to write in my entry but didn’t. Here it is:

  21. wheelchairdancer

    Yee HAA!

    This is AWESOME. Having this in such short proximity to BADD helps me see how much of a community we are..


  22. This is great. Thanks!

    Glad to see the UK feminist mental health blog linked.

  23. Thanks Stacey! This was great!

  24. Pingback: Here They Come!: the 37th edition of the Disability Blog Carnival « Intimate Healing

  25. I wrote a survey into disability identity. I’d really appreciate if disabled people could fill it out.
    Information and link here:

  26. we’ve had over a thousand visitors come to the carnival over the last two days. thank you for those who have been linking this!!

  27. i know this is after the fact, but since reading all these blog entries inspired me to write just now, i thought it would be only polite to link to it. (o:

  28. Pingback: » Here They Come!: the 37th edition of the Disability Blog Carnival

  29. Wow …That’s a lot of posts to read… Good job. I’ll also add your blog to my own list of blog links.

    I wrote many posts on identity and disability on my own blog but the one closest to this theme is perhaps the one at:

    which speaks about why I do what I do.

    Well, thanks for all those posts…

  30. Pingback: 37th Disability Blog Carnival « Cheerful Megalomaniac

  31. Pingback: bloggers unite for human rights « in media res

  32. The Center on Disabilities at California State University, Northridge

    Assistive Technology Applications Certificate Program (ATACP)

    Jacksonville, Florida Training

    Join us in the sunshine state at Jacksonville, Florida for a two day “FastTrax” training at the World Congress and Expo on Disabilities. This two day training is made up of both online instruction and live training providing plenty of opportunity for networking with like minded people in the AT field and for veterans who require assistive technology training to return to work.

    Price: $1775.00 for CSUN’s ATACP “FastTrax” training and WCDE Conference Registration

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    *Remember to mark your calendar for the California State University, Northridge’s 24th Annual International Technology and Persons with Disabilities Conference which will be held March 16-21, 2009 at the Los Angeles Airport Marriott and Renaissance Montura Hotels.

    CSUN is committed to protecting your privacy and respecting your choice for contact. If you no longer wish to receive announcements, news and information from the Center on Disabilities regarding the Annual International Technology and Persons with Disabilities Conference or ATACP Training, please let us know. Send an email to with “Remove” in the Subject line along with the email address that this message was addressed to, and we will remove your email address from our list.

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