chapter  10
Theorizing the position of people with learning difficulties within disability studies: progress and pitfalls
ByKirsten Stalker
Pages 14

From the 1960s through to at least the 1990s, the dominant theoretical framework within the academic study of learning difficulties, and within policy-making and service delivery for people with learning difficulties, was normalization: arguably this is still the case (Yates et al. 2008; Walmsley 2010). Normalization has been roundly critiqued by writers within and outside disability studies (DS), for example because it fails to explain the oppression of people with learning difficulties or to offer a means of liberation (Oliver 2009). On the other hand, Race et al. (2005) suggest that academic differences between DS and normalization are ideological rather than substantive, pointing to similarities between their respective analyses of devaluation that would repay closer examination.