This reflects the confusion of everyday usage and terminology, as do the variant spellings of some terms, the omission of accents and diacriticals, and even the different spellings in American and British English. The keywords are mainly intended for search engines to digest, not humans. That is why they appear up front. Many of the terms or phrases are no longer used in polite English, French or German in Western countries, but they may be used in some African countries or elsewhere with no offensive meaning.
They were used normally in earlier centuries in Europe, without the intention of insulting anyone. They are used in this bibliography where they seem appropriate. In some ways, this bibliography has been simplified to make it more accessible to people in the majority of countries where English is a second or third language. In other ways it is far from simple, because the responses that we human beings make toward one other are often complicated, ambivalent and ambiguous.
The religious and philosophical thoughts behind the responses are not easy to discuss in simple language. Every day, tens of thousands more people, who live in countries with restricted access to public libraries or bookshops, are getting a web connection, going online, beginning to surf around millions or billions of websites. If they find something interesting, and continue reading and searching, they will soon come to see that there are many new and old terms they could use in their search. The big computers operating the search mechanisms simply handle strings of numbers in 'machine codes'.
Computers don't get annoyed about words which may sound 'wrong' in one place, while still being good in other places.
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- Wilhelm Dilthey: Eine Einführung (German Edition).
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- We Go Down Slowly Rising (Ed Wall P.I. Book 1).
- 1. Political Histories of Reproduction.
Social networking sites will increasingly identify and block 'hate-language' that sometimes occurs in 'cyber-bullying'. Some governments already try to exclude discussion of current and historical events that are flashpoints in local community relations or between opposing national political groups; but these are human interventions - the computers don't yet get emotional as they follow the commands to process instructions.
Phrases such as ' disabled people ' and ' people with disabilities ' have both been used in this bibliography. Millions of sensitive, intelligent and well-informed people strongly prefer one of these terms, and further millions prefer the other. Several billion are indifferent to both, because they don't use English at all, and live quite satisfactory lives without it. One peace-seeking response might be to use neither term; yet that would merely lead to new terms being invented, to be argued over by further millions.
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- Christianity for Engineers;
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Another response is to use both terms, and ask everyone to be calm, breathe deeply, exercise patience, enjoy the terms they like, tolerate the terms they don't like. The English language, let loose across the electronic world, has many varieties and is beyond recapture or control. This bibliography is a small tool in a corner of the Internet. Skilful readers are warmly invited to make better tools, in any language of their choice.
Differences of English-language terminology are probably not a source of suffering for the majority of Africans, who do not habitually think in English and are fully occupied with their own affairs. The title. Does 'disability' not cover things like 'deafness' or 'hearing impairment'? Why do 'mental debility' and 'deafness' get in the title, but not 'blindness'? Originally a series of bibliographies, with which the main compiler engaged since , was titled "Social responses to disability Yet some 'deaf' or 'Deaf' people do not consider themselves to have a 'disability' - their claim is that they simply use a different kind of language, i.
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Sign Language. The use of capital 'D', i. The situation of people with various kinds of 'Mental Disorders' or 'Mental Debility' is also complicated. It might be divided more clearly and described in several other ways and levels, e. People having such conditions may perceive their situation differently from the ways in which people who are blind or have a physical disability think about their own situation, or are responded to by the general public.
Mental debility? After using 'Disabled or Deaf' in the title of several bibliographies, the compiler finally decided to add 'Mental Debility' to the present one. It's not a term that I like. More often I've used "mental disabilities or disorders" in other work, but in the present title that would be confusing, so I use 'Mental Debility', and will let intelligent readers work it out. Several decades ago, 'mental illness' was not usually grouped together with 'disability'; but that has been changing.
People with mental illness or disorders are now more likely to be included within the 'disability' field, in many parts of the world. Among the various major religions or philosophies of the world, exercises of the mind and the mental, cognitive or psychological processes may have some preventative value. Some techniques of meditation, originating in Asian Buddhism or Hinduism through two or three thousand years, have recently been used in western therapeutic and psychiatric practice often without reference to any 'religious' content or origins.
For one reason and another, I decided to put some specific words in the title, and it came out as 'mental disorders' and now 'mental debility'. In general, 'blind' and 'blindness' are strongly associated with 'disability', so they hardly need to be mentioned separately.
Disability is often represented as a form of 'suffering'; and such a word however represented in many languages is assumed to be widely understood across the world, in a broad way.
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Yet some modern people having a disability wish to emphasize that they do not see themselves as 'suffering' from the impairment of sight or hearing, the crooked leg or backbone, slower speed of thought and speech, or whatever people imagine is their 'disability'. If they are 'suffering', it may be from the bias and stupidity of people making false assumptions about them, excluding them from everyday social life, offering help they do not need while failing to recognise the many abilities they have; and also designing clothes, houses, shops, streets, toilets, and public services that assume everyone exists in a narrow range of shapes and sizes and can easily walk, see, hear, climb steps while carrying bags, operate self-service machines standing upright in a noisy environment, etc.
The experience of 'suffering' continues, but the focus changes. For example, the old instruction not to place an obstacle in the path of blind people for the perverted pleasure of seeing them trip over it? A few more general items are included on how 'suffering or affliction' has been understood in the religions and moral teachings of Africa; yet it should be kept in mind that very many disabled people prefer to be seen as simply 'living with' their impairment or disability, rather than being in a 'suffering, afflicted or oppressed' state. A few studies are listed on Abortion in religious law or ethics, where variations exist from country to country, and one of the legal grounds for abortion may be some 'deformity' in the foetus.
This is an unhappy branch of law in any country or religious context. Yet because it is often a strongly contested area, it elicits conflicting views about the prevailing social attitudes and responses to impairment in infants, and the prospects for living a life with disability, and of the modern and ancient religious teaching that may be summoned or reconstructed to address these issues. Further, a few earlier studies are listed in Appendix 3, involving 'child abuse' e. BWIBO , 'battered child' ; and on 'physical abuse of disabled people' and 'child sexual abuse' in African countries e.
A quick google will reveal recent studies of 'child sexual abuse', and specialised literature reviews on the topic e. In the bibliography and appendices below, a 'rough count' indicates that, where the gender was obvious or was known to the compiler, and taking the first author's name only, there were ca. Further detail will not be attempted.
There were many items with second, third or fourth authors who were female -- the methodology of the 'rough count' is obviously fallible. It can at least be claimed that a significant number and proportion of the listed items have female first authors.
The compiler decided to look more closely, and see if women first authors were hiding, or were being hidden or downgraded, or really were not there. Doing so brought the ratio nearer to 1 female first author to 2 males. I do not know whether the increased representation of women increases the number of useful viewpoints, or of data accessible only to women, or characteristically female wisdom, or whatever - it seems quite likely, but the present exercise is not designed to elucidate such issues.
The Big Man is at the end of the list - he runs the department, raises the funds, gives the orders, gets his name on everything, and ultimately gives authority to whatever research the department produces. In some countries and other fields of study, that list order may be reversed; or it may be a Big Mama who runs the show and gets her name at the front, back, or middle of everything. Some journals require authors to state more clearly the quantity and nature of input from each listed author, to reduce the tendency of academics to 'game' the dubious metrics of journal publication by which university administrators attempt to measure 'research output'.
Now find a rock which, when placed at the other end of the plank, will just balance the weight of your hog.
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Clever, huh? Now you guess the weight of that rock. A deliberate effort has been made to include the 'voices' of named and identified disabled or deaf people , writing or recounting or expressing their own thoughts. The count of those first authors who are disabled or deaf or having mental disorders as shown, or as known to the compiler and who communicated from Africa concerning our field, is smaller: ca.
Very likely there are more listed, who chose not to make their disability known, or were co-authors; or whose gender did not get onto the compiler's radar screen, or were ephemeral journalists, or wrote material which was credited to someone else. To these 83 people noted above, and mostly listed below under their surnames, may reasonably be added 58 more in six groups Beyond doubt, various forms of visual or tactile art, and of music, song and dance, 'therapeutic space' and 'deaf space', can and do play a significant part in the healing and uplift of people with impairments of mind, body, hearing, communication and relationship -- whether by surrounding the disabled person with attractive sounds, shapes, tactile experiences, and viewing film, or by facilitating the disabled person to produce music, art or film, or by communicating therapeutic skills via these media, or making available such 'spatial dimensions' as will facilitate the flourishing of people who have different perceptions of the world.
To do so for the pictorial or graphic media is not easy for the present compiler, who has been fixated on printed text for much of his life and does not usually 'see' pictures and never had a television in his house as an adult - he watched TV for a year as a teenager, then let it go. TV moved slowly compared with the 'hot' media of radio and text. Now, watching it occasionally during dialysis, I see that modern TV often moves in a cascade of images, which is too fast to follow or understand, but one can merely 'experience', or be confused by it, while multitasking.
However, these vast areas of visual, audible or imaginative media, and their potential impact in healing, and spiritual experience should be taken up by others better equipped in these fields, which may have greater appeal to the generation born with an electronic gadget in its hand. Web searches on these terms show up some discussion of healing and therapy.
The informative autobiographical work by William ZULU is greatly enhanced by the impact of his own graphic illustrations throughout the book. Deaf people with or without capital D live to some extent in different worlds from both 'normal', able-bodied, mentally-able and 'disabled people'.
A campaigning form of Deaf proposal would be: "There's nothing wrong with us. We can do anything anyone else can do! Don't need ramps, braille, elevators, special toilets, all that expensive stuff. Only, we use our own languages. Come and learn Sign -- it's not difficult. Look: children pick it up very quickly!
One point of vigorous divergence may be the ideological 'inclusion' of deaf children in ordinary classrooms, rather than having special provision for them in groups of deaf children taught by specialists who have some facility in signing.
The blind or physically disabled child may benefit from classroom inclusion - if they can hear the lesson in a language they know, they can make efforts to take it in. But deaf children may hear nothing, or if they have serious hearing impairment they may hear only one word in three, and guess a few more.
In the typically overcrowded infant and junior schools across Africa, the child who hears little or nothing is likely to remain unnoticed, and may learn nothing more than the derision or amusement of the other children. Where several deaf children are in a classroom together, they may work out a signing system between them, and then be punished for using it, as still too often happens.