Inclusive Conversation Analysis with Disabled People

Val Williams, Marcus Jepson, Lisa Ponting, Kerrie Ford

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter in a book

2 Citations (Scopus)
335 Downloads (Pure)


Disability Studies (DS) approaches lie at the heart of this chapter, which concerns itself with an analysis of interactions in which people with the label of intellectual disabilities (ID) engage with social care workers. An intellectual disability, by definition, is a lifelong impairment, which involves cognitive limitations as well as difficulties with social functioning, and coping with everyday life (Emerson & Heslop, 2010). However, the category is very broad, differentiated, and often blurred (Williams, Swift, & Mason, 2015), and there are strong reasons for avoiding a prior impairment-related definition. In Disability Studies, the very notion of disability is critiqued and questioned, with social model adherents following Oliver (1990) in viewing disability as the product of a disabling society which fails to include disabled people. While not denying the embodied reality and impact of impairments on the individual (see Shakespeare, 2006; Shakespeare & Watson, 2001; Thomas, 2004), this chapter is simply more interested in the way in which categories of disability emerge from particular social circumstances, contexts and interactions. In conducting the research, we have worked closely to include people with the label of ID as active participants in the research process, and we aim to explore some different ways in which this can be achieved in research about interaction.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Palgrave Handbook of Adult Mental Health
Subtitle of host publicationDiscourse and Conversation Studies
EditorsMichelle O'Reilly, Jessica Nina Lester
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-137-49685-0
ISBN (Print)978-1-349-69789-2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2016


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