Valuing Disability, Causing Disability*

  title={Valuing Disability, Causing Disability*},
  author={Elizabeth Barnes},
  pages={88 - 113}
Disability rights activists often claim that disability is not—by itself—something that makes disabled people worse off. A popular objection to such a view of disability is this: were it correct, it would make it permissible to cause disability and impermissible to cause nondisability (or impermissible to “cure” disability, to use the value-laden term). The aim of this article is to show that these twin objections don’t succeed. 

Is Disability a Neutral Condition

This paper concerns our evaluation of disability, and its impact on wellbeing. One of the central philosophical questions about disability is whether it is a type of harm. Saying that disability is

Kantian Ethics, Well-Being, and Disability

Jessica Flanigan defends a broadly Kantian approach to disability and disability rights that also emphasizes the importance of considering disabled people’s experiences. Flanigan begins with the

Disability, Well-Being, and (In)Apt Emotions

Dana Howard addresses whether some emotional responses toward disabled, which are stigmatizing and potentially unwarranted, assume a controversial understanding of disability. Certain conceptions of

Is disability mere difference?

  • G. Bognar
  • Philosophy, Medicine
    Journal of Medical Ethics
  • 2015
Some philosophers and disability advocates argue that disability is not bad for you, and should be considered and even celebrated as just another manifestation of human diversity.

Disability: a justice-based account

Most people have a clear sense of what they mean by disability, and have little trouble identifying conditions they consider disabling. Yet providing a clear and consistent definition of disability

How Not to Argue for Selective Reproductive Procedures

  • E. Kittay
  • Philosophy
    Kennedy Institute of Ethics journal
  • 2017
It is argued that the presumptions that a life with disability is ceteris paribus a worse life, and that there is an inherent badness in living with a disability are contestable and fail to provide an argument that avoids the objections that disability scholars have voiced to reproductive selection against disability.


: I attempt to adjudicate the disagreement between those who seek to reconceptualise disability as mere-difference, and their opponents. I do so by reviewing a central conviction motivating the

Disability as solidarity: political not (only) metaphysical

What is disability? What do we want it to be? In slogan form, these questions characterise an “ameliorative” project for disability (Haslanger 2000, 2012). Elizabeth Barnes pioneers such a project in

Disability and Well‐Being

: This entry discusses the relationship between disability and wellbeing. Disabilities are commonly thought to be unfortunate, but whether this is true is unclear, and if it is true, it is unclear

Well-being, Disability, and Choosing Children

The view that it is better for life to be created free from disability is pervasive in both common sense and philosophy. We cast doubt on this view by focusing on an influential line of thinking that