Reverberations: Disability and the New Kinship Imaginary


The concept of Learning Disabilities (LD) didn't exist until 1963. Now, LDs are the most commonly diagnosed category for American children in special education. Based on long-term fieldwork and focused interviews in NYC with parents of "atypical" children, the authors analyze how experiences of family life with a disability reverberate through the life cycle as well as the domestic cycle. Our findings show that families are reimagining kinship narratives as they refashion their expectations and daily lives around non-normative children, often taking their insights beyond the home, and contributing more broadly to new cultural understandings of human cognitive diversity.