In Cultural Locations of Disability, Sharon Snyder and David Mitchell trace how disabled people came to be viewed as biologically deviant. The eugenics era pioneered techniques that managed “defectives” through the application of therapies, invasive case histories, and acute surveillance techniques, turning disabled persons into subjects for a readily available research pool. Snyder and Mitchell argue that the social production of human variation as aberrancy. From our modern obsessions with tidiness and cleanliness to our desire to attain perfect bodies, notions of disabilities as examples of human insufficiency proliferate. These disability practices infuse more general modes of social obedience at work today. Consequently, this important study explains how disabled people are instrumental in charting the passage from a disciplinary society to one based upon regulation of the self.
"I am glad I read this book. It ranges widely, and makes some sweeping generalizations. Athough it is hard to agree with it in every detail, as a contribution to understanding of disability, past and present, it is a book not to be missed."