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No Pity: People with Disabilities Forging a New Civil Rights Movement Paperback – October 25, 1994

ISBN-13: 978-0812924121 ISBN-10: 0812924126 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Broadway Books; 1 edition (October 25, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812924126
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812924121
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 5.6 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,564 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Shapiro, social policies writer for U.S. News & World Report , centers his empathetic review of our society's relations to its disabled population on the 1992 passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act. He documents the political progress of the issue with stories about several of the nation's estimated 35 million disabled people. Included are polio-afflicted activists, Special Olympics competitors, armed services veterans and elderly people who owe their survival to medical and technological advances. While the author cites encouraging signs of progress made in the advance of their rights, he notes that disabled people still struggle to be accepted on equal, independent terms without being patronized, segregated or victimized in an antiquated social services system and a prejudiced society. Author tour.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

With 35 million disabled Americans, the American with Disabilities Act and its implications are here to stay. Shapiro, a U.S. News & World Report journalist, explores in depth the thoughts, fears, and facts behind the disability rights movement. The premise throughout this compelling historical account is that there is no pity or tragedy in disability--it is society's myths, fears, and stereotypes that make being disabled difficult. Shapiro's coverage is thorough, ranging from the movement's beginnings in Berkeley in the 1960s to the issues that will emerge in the future. Those interested in gaining a basic understand of the disability rights movement, will find this title is well organized, thoroughly researched, and thought-provoking. For all collections.
- Emily H. Ferren, Carroll Cty. P.L., Westminster, Md.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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So far, this is a very well written, and very informative book.
Markos2468
I am a college student studying to be a Special Education Teacher and this book is a must for anyone working with people with special needs.
D. Raher
As a teacher hoping to open space for questioning, that's exactly what I want in a book.
Daniel J. Henry

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 32 people found the following review helpful By K. L Sadler VINE VOICE on November 6, 1999
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a deaf person and an educator, I find myself very involved whether I like it or not in being an activist. I was taking a law class on disability law, and the second footnote in the required text was on this book. That intrigued me, and when I read the reviews about the book, I was even more intrigued. This book is a must-read for anyone who might or does work with the disabled. We no longer want the pity, the institutions, and the exclusion from society. We want to be viewed as normal except with one part or a few parts that may not function as some would consider normal. We want an equal education, equal opportunity to jobs, equal opportunities to participate in society. And everyone will be the better for it. Mr Shapiro as a non-disabled person, wrote a book that was compassionate but strived hard to see things from our point of view. This ability probably stands him in good stead as a journalist. He even taught me things I didn't know about other disabilities. Educators, lawyers, politicians, parents, social workers, and health care professionals need to get off their duff and read this book. They can no longer turn a blind eye or claim ignorance as an excuse to not allowing those of us with differences our rights under the law.
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58 of 62 people found the following review helpful By Lisa Ferris on December 27, 2003
Format: Paperback
In regards to the review by Cindy Heilman below, it is apparent that you missed a major point of this book. When you state that "Neither the disabled, homosexuals, nor adoptees are the target of lynching, Jim Crow laws, fire engine hosing, or vicious police dogs."
You must have missed the disability history about Nazi death camps, false imprisonments in institutions, forced sterilization, abuse by caregivers, death by neglect, murder of those with mental disabilities thought to be under demonic controls, murder of disabled children in underdeveloped countries, the list goes on and on. I'm not an expert on the experiences of gays and adoptees, but as far as gays...it seems they face some of the most violent crimes that helped institute hate crime statutes. The history of African-Americans has been tragic and an embarrassment for our country, but they are certainly not alone in facing hatred and violent discrimination.
As for your statement regarding the difference in abilities justifies unequal treatment, you are missing the point that we all have differing abilities and must find ways to use our assets to contribute to society and accommodate our weaknesses. This holds true for any college student who has picked a major that accommodates their strengths while downplaying their weaknesses or any member of any sports team who picks the position that will give the team the best advantage. Disabled people are not asking for unfair advantages, they are asking for equal access. A level playing field. The same opportunities to build on their strengths and contribute to the society that has blocked them out. Even under horrendous Jim Crow Laws, African-Americans were sometimes allowed to go into the back of a restuarant and be served.
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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Daniel J. Henry on December 16, 1999
Format: Paperback
Four years ago this book was part of a class taught by James McLeskey that changed my life. Because this book is so well written, and because it time after time moved me into zones of cognitive dissonance about what I knew and about what I believed, it had the effect of making me incredibly uncomfortable about my own unrecognized prejuidaces concerning folks with disabilities. As Shapiro says, it is the only minority group which we can join at any time, and the older we live, the more likely we are to acquire disabilities. I currently teach classes about inclusion of students with special needs in general education classrooms, and this book has received rave reviews from many students and made many others angry. As a teacher hoping to open space for questioning, that's exactly what I want in a book.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 24, 2003
Format: Paperback
My perception has changed in ways immeasurable in regards to people with disabilities. Now, every single day I am aware of the small and large ways in which those with disabilities are discrimated against by temporarily able-bodied individuals. I am buying several copies to lend and give out, I hope others do the same.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Mark Sherry on August 10, 2002
Format: Paperback
This book is written in an easy-to-read style by a journalist who has covered disability issues for many years. It explains how he came to see that disability is a civil rights issue, just like racial or sexual discrimination. And it provides a very interesting history of the American disability movement in particular.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Suzanne Zan Thornton on November 15, 2006
Format: Paperback
The Essential Primer from a non-disabled person's view. The 1994 book covers history, policies, and the interdependence we have together.

Judy Heumann and Evan Kemp recommended this to me in 1990's, and my eyes were opened wide after I read it. Ch. 1 and Tinytimism (as I call it)applies to many groups. Some call it 'Uncle Tom','assimilationist', or other. 'No Pity' describes why the charity model is fatalistic and damaging. You can see this played out in the Congress about 'welfare', 'healthcare', Clint Eastwood's attack on the ADA, and 'special needs'.

Sorry folks - we just want what you think we have, but we don't really have it: civil, legal, accessible, culturally affirming human rights.

Even if you have a disability, it is vital to read the sections that you think you know- and definately read the ones you don't know. Anyone working in health care, Addiction, Mental Health, VA, CILS, advocacy for any disability related group should read this first.

My only regret was I didn't read it sooner.

Access is a civil right and an attitude, not just a ramp (TM)!
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