restricted access On Blindness

Inept, inspired, pathetic, entombed, insatiable, or monstrous: the conventions that are ordinarily used to represent blind people reveal far more about our culture than they do about the experience of blindness. This speculative essay examines the place of the blind figure in sighted culture, focusing especially on the role of language in shaping popular conceptions of and associations with blindness. Considering such common sayings as ‘blind rage,’ ‘blind alley,’ ‘blind justice,’ and ‘the blind leading the blind,’ the essay contemplates our myriad perceptions and constructions of blindness and blind people.