Learning disability – past, present and future
In this challenging talk, Simon Jarrett asks how the surprising history of people with learning disabilities can help to explain the lives that people lead today. There have been some big advances and improvements, but there are also worrying trends that threaten people’s hard-won status in society. After discussing the past and the present, he asks what the future might hold. How can we meet the challenge of making a better tomorrow?
Dr Simon Jarrett is a historian and research fellow at Birkbeck, University of London. He has written and published widely on the history of learning disability and his book “The Idiot: a history, from 1700 to today” is planned for publication by Reaktion Books in 2019. He is also the editor of Community Living, the only UK-wide print magazine about learning disability. Before devoting himself full-time to academic work, he worked in projects across Britain supporting people with learning disabilities. He is a trustee of the Westminster Society.
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