115th Annual Conference - Honolulu, Hawaii
Friday, November 10 - Sunday, November 12, 2017

Sight, Visibility, and Disability in American Literature

Session Chair: 
Kimberly Drake, Scripps College
Session 3: Friday 1:15 – 2:45 pm
Henry 102


  1. This essay examines the poetry of Constance Merritt (who is blind), exploring how the poems of A Protocol for Touch (1999) deconstruct the hegemony of vision in our culture and in enlightenment thought not only in their content, but also in their use of traditional forms, reminding us that a “form” is also something to be touched.
  2. Rhett Farinholt, University of California, San Diego
    Do literary configurations of antidepressants operate as "ramps" or "prostheses"?  To answer this question, this paper applies the tools of environmental disability studies to look at three depression memoirs from the 1990s and explores how such a distinction helps communicate the experience and treatment of invisible disabilities.
  3. Liz Faucett, Brenau University
    HBO’s Westworld makes disability visible through its female robot characters, Dolores and Maeve, who suffer from Dissociative Identity Disorder. Westworld visualizes the relationship between non-mentally disabled (humans) and mentally disabled (robots) and depicts the tendency for non-disabled persons to dismiss, de-authenticate, and devalue the experiences of the mentally ill.
Session Cancelled: