Disability history lecture X – Dr. Sebastian Barsch

Traditions of „othering“ – teaching disability history

Dr. Sebastian Barsch

The lecture will take place on Wednesday 18 May 2016 from 16 until 18 pm in room 00.41 of the VHI-building (Vandenheuvelinstituut) in the Dekenstraat n°2 (Leuven, Belgium).


Societies both in in the past  and in the present were and are marked by diversity. Although diversity has always been a normal condition of human coexistence, the reception of diversity was often the starting point of exclusion. The presentation focuses on issues of diversity in the teaching of history by referring to the example of deaf culture as it was seen in the burgeoning field of special education in the 19th century. The characteristics of deaf culture’s contemporary historical consciousness are being summarized and linked to this group’s history. After that, a brief overview of how this topic could be of use for history education will be presented. Moreover, it will be shown that disability history in general can be a valuable subject in history lessons for societies facing diversity.