Labour Research February 2016


A very capitalist condition

A history and politics of disability

Roddy Slorach, Bookmarks, 300 pages, £12.99

This book examines the origins and development of disability, and highlights the hidden history of groups such as disabled war veterans, deaf people and those in mental distress. An active trade unionist, Roddy Slorach writes about the ways in which disabled people have fought back and organised. So, for example, we learn about the march of blind people in Britain in 1920, when the slogan “Justice not charity” was first heard. 

In a wide-ranging critique, Slorach describes how capitalist society segregates and marginalises disabled people, turning minds and bodies into commodities and generating new impairment and disability as it does so.

Professor Peter Beresford, co-chair of Shaping Our Lives, the disabled people’s and service users’ organisation, says that the book “provides an alternative vision of how such historic and cruel discrimination may be overcome and all of us included on equal terms in society”. 

• There is a book launch of A very capitalist condition on 11 February at the Unite union head office, Thoebalds Road, London, WC1X 8TN, at 6.30pm. Author Roddy Slorach will be joined by Debbie Jolly, co-founder of Disabled People Against Cuts, and Sean McGovern of the TUC General Council.
Sign language interpretation will be provided. 
To reserve a place, contact: [email protected]/020 7637 1848 

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