Wheelchair Accessibility


***All public programs at The Graduate Center, CUNY are postponed, canceled, or will be livestreamed through March 28th, 2020.

This event has been postponed, please check back here on our website (or sign up for our mailing list here for updates) about alternative plans or possible rescheduling for this conference.

Join us for the 2020 CUNY Graduate Center's English Student Association Conference "Disability is Not a Metaphor: Access and Accessibility" for an access-focused day of conversation, theorizing, and community, featuring Keynote speaker Cyrée Jarelle Johnson.

The conference will take place in Room 9205 and the Skylight Room (9201) at The Graduate Center, CUNY and is free and open to the public.

Inequity is perpetuated by gatekeeping. Oppressive systems rob marginalized communities of opportunity and rhetoricity by reproducing harm in increasingly smaller circles, granting access to the few while cementing the fates of the other. As Stephen Winter notes in his discussion of transitional justice, “the account of political legitimacy does not rest upon belief and behavior but upon justification.” What justifies exclusion and blockading? How do we use illness and disability as cultural stand-ins for pity, shame, and the humanist drive to combat death?

This imbalance can be tipped by throwing open gates traditionally kept shut. In fact, we want to smash the gates. Marginalized voices shape discourse from the margins, and digital communications provide opportunities for advocates to craft an alternative narrative of sociality, community, and activism. This conference would like to examine accessibility along two intertwining forks: what is access; what is ability? What systems stymie social change, and how? Can we learn new methodologies by adjusting our historical lens? What can we do to see those who have been systematically erased?

Visit the full conference website HERE.

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About ESA:

The Graduate Center English Student Association connects current students and alumni of the GC English program through news, events, the annual conference, and regular governance meetings.

Click here to read about the conference Co-Chairs: Jessica Lugo and Jesse Rice-Evans; and Coordinators: Christian Lewis, Emily Price, and Miranda Hajduk.

Co-sponsored by the English Student Association, The Center for the Humanities, the Doctoral Students' Council, GC Poetics Group, Early Modern Interdisciplinary Group, The Futures Initiative, Pearl Kibre Medieval Studies Group and Institute for Research on the African Diaspora in the Americas (IRADAC) at The Graduate Center, CUNY.