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Critical Conversations 2022: Disability, Policing, and the Question of the Human

A police car

This panel conversation will act as an introduction of sorts to abolition, decarceration, and to how conceptions of the human are wrapped up in policing disabled lives. The focus of the conversation will be on how various institutions attempt to police disability, that is by managing, correcting, regulating, and containing disabled people/bodyminds. Guiding this panel is the question, how are disability and ableism related to policing? The conversation will begin with discussing how the question of human must necessarily not appear as a question, but as something already known and determined within carceral institutions. By tracing stories of disabled lives criminalized across time and space, we will move from revealing the concept of ‘normal’ as central to institutionalization, incarceration, and policing to then asking, “How is disability studies, and its reckoning with old and new stories of disability, pivotal to the project of abolition? How do you understand abolition as necessary to pursuing disability justice?”


The Critical Conversations series from the Centre for Global Disability Studies at the University of Toronto Scarborough (UTSC) brings together scholars, activists, and researchers to discuss timely issues that impact global disability justice. The Critical Conversations Series seeks to uphold the Centre for Global Disability Studies values of promoting accessibility in academic conversations, building interdisciplinary community, and supporting anti-ableist scholarship and activism that furthers anti-colonial and transnational perspectives.  

This year’s Critical Conversations series highlights the research expertise of advanced graduate students who have contributed significantly to CGDS through curated roundtable events featuring our 2022 graduate student RA Fellows in conversation with invited speakers.

The 2022 Critical Conversations series will take place virtually on a Zoom webinar platform. These are live events and will not be recorded.

Live captions, ASL, and other specified language translation will be provided. Please submit other access requests or needs in your RSVP form, or contact with questions.

To attend virtually, please RSVP for the event you would like to attend using the links below. Those who have RSVP’d will receive an email with a link to join the live webinar.

Wed, 06/01/2022 - 12:00 to 13:30

Panelists: Idil Abdillahi, Elaine Cagulada, Liat Ben-Moshe, Talila (TL) Lewis
Moderator: Celeste Pang, CGDS Graduate Alumni member
Host: Cassandra Hartblay, Director, CGDS