Members of a Network working on


This is the page where one will find details about and content of a proposed weekend course at the University of Calgary on Ableism as it develops

General Description:

The University of Calgary Community Rehabilitation and Disability Studies program is planning to offer a half course on the social dynamics of ableism and transhumanism and their impact on medicine, health, rehabilitation, work and education, disabled people and so called non-disabled people, community and society at large. This course will be of interest I hope to Health and Science and Technology policy makers, health policy and care academics and administrators, community and clinical rehabilitation professionals and practitioners, disabled people service organizations, rehabilitation educators, students from many disciplines from disability studies to various forms of engineering (e.g. bio, nano, neuro) to health and social areas. The plan is to offer it for CREDIT and AUDIT.

Impact of Ableism and Transhumanism
Undergraduate: CORE xxxx; Graduate: CORE xxxx; Public
Sept, xxx, 2009 Time: 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM; Location: xxx
Ableism is a set of beliefs, processes and practices that produce based on abilities one exhibits or values, a particular understanding of oneself, one’s body and one’s relationship with others of humanity, other species and the environment, and includes how one is judged by others. Ableism reflects the sentiment of certain social groups and social structures that value and promote certain abilities, for example, productivity and competitiveness, over others, such as empathy, compassion and kindness. Transhumanism is “The intellectual and cultural movement that affirms the possibility and desirability of fundamentally improving the human condition through applied reason, especially by developing and making widely available technologies to eliminate aging and to greatly enhance human intellectual, physical, and psychological capacities “ (Word Transhumanist Association The transhumanized form of ableism sees the improvement of functioning of among others the human body beyond what it normally does as essential ( Ableism and the transhumanization of ableism shaped and continues to shape areas such as science and technology policies and directions, human security, health care, education, social cohesion, social policies, and relationships among social groups, individuals, communities, countries, humans and non-humans, and humans and their Environment. The transhumanized model of health for examples sees one only as healthy if one has obtained existing ‘upgrades’ allowing for a fundamental change in all facets of health care and policy (Wolbring (2008) Peer Reviewed Why NBIC? Why human performance enhancement? European Journal of Social Science Research, Vol 21,No.1,pp.25-40, can be provided if I receive email request) . Ableism is one of the most societal entrenched and accepted isms and transhumanism is gaining ground fast. The course will provide individuals working in or studying disability studies, rehabilitation, bio and other engineering fields, health, health sciences, social work and related areas, human services and policy a look at the impact of ableism and transhumanism in their sphere of influence. This course will look at how ableism and transhumanism is impacting and might impact in the future society and communities. Practical applications will be viewed through the lens of governance, science, technology,policy, research, academics, education, service provision and community needs.

What does one gain:
New and emerging science and technologies and social concepts such as Transhumanism and new forms of ableism will possibly impact

• Disability studies students: a) by changing the understanding of disability and impairment; b) by generating the new social group of the techno poor disabled and impaired.; c) by changing the face of education and other areas of interest to the well being of disabled people;

• Community rehabilitation and rehabilitation students and practitioners a) by changing the scope of rehabilitation due to new rehabilitation methods that includes enhancement technologies (e.g. recovery to as normal a condition as possible might change to as optimum a condition as possible which would include that the recovered client has better abilities than the normal body); b) by changing the desires of the clients (not normative treatment but the newest treatment available even if its outdoes the norm; c) by changing the amount of focus on community rehabilitation and who is seen first in need of rehabilitation with the appearance of the techno poor disabled and impaired; d) by changing the self identity of rehabilitation practitioners (e.g. rehabilitation practitioners might see themselves at the forefront of promoting enhancement technologies due to client demands)

• Students, administrators and practitioners linked to health policy and care: a) by changing concepts such as health, burden of disease, right to health, right to health care, and measures such as the disability adjusted life years and other; c: by changing the expectations of the health care client; d) by impacting global health disparities;

• Engineering (neuro, bio, nano…) Students: a) by allowing students and academics and industry to generate products that directly impact ableism and transhumanism and with that lead to possible social consequences the engineering student, academic and industry person should be aware of; b) by giving engineering engineering student, academic and industry person an opening to be involved in the governance of the consequences enabled by their products

• Disabled people service providers: a) by impacting who will be still there clients; b) by impacting how much money they will have for the clients they have now;

• Social Science related students: a) by having whole new fields of inquiry social science students could pursue; b) by impacting the social groups they so far cover

• Kinesiology and other sports care and policy related students and sports officials and administrators: a) by changing the scope of sports; b) by changing the athlete; Oscar Pistorius and the Future Nature of Olympic, Paralympic and Other Sports; c) by changing the job description for many sports related areas; d0 by changing funding criteria and what is seen a success in sports

• Science and technology studies students: a) by having whole new fields of inquiry science and technology studies students could pursue; b) by impacting the ares they cover so far cover

• General Public: a) by changing social dynamics among members of the public; b) changing concept of citizenship and social cohesion


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