The first volume presents a collection of exciting papers exploring several new areas of disability research. The contributions include: examination of the media representation of disability and coverage of disability policy issues which gives an understanding of the far reaching impact of the fourth estate; an historical analysis of the correspondence between the identifier of Down syndrome and Darwin that lends insights into the development of interpretations of mental retardation particularly Down syndrome as a throwback to the more primitive nature of man; analysis of hospital discharge data which demonstrates that persons with chronic conditions and impairments are more likely than those without to need hospitalization for injuries resulting from violence; and an overview of voting behavior among persons with disabilities. Subsequent volumes will focus on specific subjects related to disability issues.
Ed Yelin, University of California at San Francisco, USA Just received my copy of the first volume of Research in Social Science and Disabiity...There isn't an article that I didn't enjoy. Kay Schriner, Research Professor, Fulbright Institute of International Relations ...Got the book in the mail yesterday. I love it!...An excellent work...It's so good to have this on my shelf. Monroe Berkowitz, The State University of New Jersey, USA I have just finished reading the articles in Expanding the Scope of Social Science Research on Disability. Congratulations for doing a wonderful job. The title is great. I think that you have expanded the boundaries. Corinne Kirchner, American Foundation for the Blind, New York, USA A purchaser's investment will be best rewarded by reading all chapters, and I mean "rewarded" in the sense of gaining quality information, not just quantity of pages. I have already noted the disciplinary diversity. The wide-ranging subject matter includes, among other topics, fascinating analyses of a century of perceptions of mental retardation, the framing of disability by contemporary news media, the legalistic framing of ADA Title III issues, US electoral politics among people with disabilities, and, at a basic social science level of conceptualization, "gender contradictions and status dilemmas" (p. 85) in disability. Furthermore, as the editors emphasize, the methodological variety deserves attention in its own right. Among the qualitative examples are a thematic analysis of historical documents, case studies of judicial decisions, and an "institutional ethnography" of an innovative health care delivery project. On the quantitative side, whereas familiar techniques are applied to well-known data sets in the economists' analysis of labor market transitions and the political scientists' analysis of electoral behavior, both groups of authors pay exemplary attention to the limitations in their data sources. Two other quantitative analyses employ more novel data. One is a content analysis of 500+ print news stories and the other uses discharge records from a national sample of community hospitals to detect patterns of disability-related "intentional injuries." Disability Studies Quarterly