The ugly laws : disability in public

by Schweik, Susan M. 1956-

Format: Print Book ©2009.
Availability: Available at 1 Library 1 of 2 copies
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Braddock Carnegie Library Non Fiction 346.73 SCH
Location  Braddock Carnegie Library
Collection  Non Fiction
Call Number  346.73 SCH
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CLP - Main Library Mezzanine - Non-fiction CHECKED OUT
Location  CLP - Main Library
Collection  Mezzanine - Non-fiction

In the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries, municipallaws targeting "unsightly beggars" sprang up in cities across America. Seeming to criminalize disability and thus offering a visceral example of discrimination, these "ugly laws" have become a sort of shorthand for oppression in disability studies, law, and the arts.
In this watershed study of the ugly laws, Susan M. Schweik uncovers the murky history behind the laws, situating the varied legislation in its historical context and exploring in detail what the laws meant. Illustrating how the laws join the history of the disabled and the poor, Schweik not only gives the reader a deeper understanding of the ugly laws and the cities where they were generated, she locates the laws at a crucial intersection of evolving and unstable concepts of race, nation, sex, class, and gender. Moreover, she explores the history of resistance to the ordinances, using the often harrowing life stories of those most affected by their passage. Moving to the laws' more recent history, Schweik analyzes the shifting cultural memory of the ugly laws, examining how they have been used--and misused--by academics, activists, artists, lawyers, and legislators.

Published Reviews
Publisher's Weekly Review: "In 1881, the Chicago City Code read, "Any person who is diseased, maimed, mutilated, or in any way deformed... shall not... expose himself to public view." These "ugly laws" began in San Francisco in 1867, then spread through the U.S. and abroad; many in the U.S. weren't repealed until the 1970s. English professor Schweik (A Gulf So Deeply Cut: American Women Poets and the Second World War), co-director of UC Berkley's disabilities studies program, explores the emergence of these laws and their tragic consequences for thousands. Motivated largely by the desire to reduce beggar populations and to expand the role of charitable organizations, in practical terms the ugly laws meant "harsh policing; antibegging; systematized suspicion...; and structural and institutional repulsion of disabled people." Schweik discusses the nineteenth century conditions that created a demand for these laws, but notes how the resulting practices have carried through to the present. Schweik draws on a deep index of resources, from legal proceedings to out-of-print books, to tell the story of individuals long lost to history. Her detailed analysis will be of primary interest to those involved with the history of social justice in the U.S. and the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act. 18 Illus. (May) Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information."

Additional Information
Series History of disability series.
Subjects People with disabilities -- Legal status, laws, etc. -- United States -- History.
Beggars -- Legal status, laws, etc. -- United States -- History.
Discrimination against people with disabilities -- Law and legislation -- United States -- History.
People with disabilities -- United States -- History.
Beggars -- United States -- History.
Publisher New York :New York University,©2009.
Language English
Description xii, 431 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm.
Bibliography Notes Includes bibliographical references (pages 351-404) and index.
ISBN 9780814740576 (cloth : alk. paper)
081474057X (cloth : alk. paper)
9780814783610 (pbk.)
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