Session 2: Disability, Care and Inclusive Citizenship

Session of UvH Anniversary Conference 2014 “A Meaningful Life in a Just Society”.
Chaired by dr. Gily Coene (Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium)

In the past decades, disabled citizens have struggled for the recognition of their human rights and for their inclusion as equal citizens in society. Studies and reports, however, indicate that disabled persons are still a highly vulnerable group in society. Disabled citizens are confronted with multiple forms of discrimination, face a lot of barriers to access basic facilities and ‘good’ care, and remain largely invisible in the social and political domain. In this session we wish to explore some alternative theoretical frameworks that can ground more inclusive policies and practices of democratic citizenship for disabled persons. How can a care-ethics perspective and relational concepts of citizenship inspire such policies and practices? What are the possible tensions? Where do current approaches fail to include disabled persons and why? How to balance the recognition of identities and diversity with demands for equal rights and inclusive citizenship in daily practices and institutional policies?


  • Kristof Uvijn & Jurgen De Wispelaere PhD (University College Gent, Belgium): Disability Against Domination: The Promise of Republican Freedom
  • Dr. Goedele De Clerck (Gent University, Belgium): Care, Identity, and Deaf Citizenship
  • Elizabeth De Schauwer MA (Gent University, Belgium): Difference and Differentiation – Opportunities of Becoming in Inclusive Education

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