Thursday, January 27, 2011

An Entirely Biased Who's Who of the Disability Blogosphere, January 2011

@_louhicky who draws Crip Strips recently asked me about the movers and shakers within the disability movement on-line. The part of the disability movement I know most about is in the blogosphere, and when I began to think of important bloggers to tell Lou about, I thought it might make something of a celebratory post. As it turned out, I've had a few poorly weeks and during such times it is other bloggers who help me feel connected to things.

However, I am no particular authority on this, not all important disability blogger will have appeared on my radar and I'm bound to have forgotten some of those that have. I've also struggled to categorise these in any meaningful way. So it occurs to me, maybe other folk can blog their own lists of important disability bloggers. Hmm... I have vague amorphous thoughts about compiling a gigantic map of the disability blogosphere, but as I say, poorly weeks. Please at least comment with links to important bloggers I've forgotten. Right...

Penny at Disability Studies, Temple U., was one of the first bloggers on disability I encountered, a real community blogger who writes fascinating posts about disabled people in history and initiated the monthly Disability Blog Carnivals (the most recent having been at Butterfly Dreams).

I think the best academic disability bloggers are the great Ira Socol who wrote The Drool Room and blogs at SpeEdChange, frugal feminist Irational Point at Modus Dopens and Deven Black at Education on the Plate. Someone I regard as academic because she write seriously about autism research and psychology is Lindsay at Autist's Corner. Ballastexistenz and Bev at Square 8 are perhaps the most prominent bloggers writing about neurodiversity.

The most glamourous disability bloggers I know are Wheelchair Dancer (who is a professional dancer, funnily enough) and writer and TV presenter Mik Scarlet at Scarlet Sees Red. Two very important writers on disability are articulator-of-pain Elizabeth McClung at Screw Bronze and Dave Hingsburger at Rolling Around Life. Poet Cripchick has been a pivotal in the disability blogging community, but has been quiet since November. Hope she is okay.

Entrepreneur and bride-to-be Mary at This is my Blog writes honestly and engagingly about a huge range of personal-political issues. Wheelie Catholic writes about politics, post lots of links and videos as well as moving pieces about everyday greatness and injustice. Lawyer and sometime revolutionary Mark Siegel at the 19th Floor writes about disability in culture and US politics, as does Imfunnytoo at Midlife and Treachery and Stephen Kuusisto at Planet of the Blind. William Peace at Bad Cripple is another American writing especially about medical ethics, as well as recently charting his own ill health with considerable courage and candour.

Two of the UK's most prominent and prolific disability bloggers are nautical knitter Emma at Writer in a Wheelchair and death-walking diva BendyGirl at Benefit Scrounging Scum, who were the ring-leaders of the recent One Month Before Heartbreak. BendyGirl also started the Broken of Britain blog, collecting stories of disabled people affected by UK benefit reform. They both in turn write for Where's the Benefit? about UK disabilty benefits, as does writer and sweetheart of the twitterati Lisa at Lisy Babe's Blog and Incurable Hippie who blogs at Incurable Hippie's Musings and Rants as well as The F-Word on occasion. Other important British writers on disability include kinky Claire Lewis at Disabled People Fight Back, Sara at Same Difference and brevity being the soul of wit, Katie at Everyone Else Has a Blog.

I don't actually think of these as Mommy Bloggers, but these ladies are all joyful and articulate parents of disabled children; Starlife at Life Decanted , Stephanie at Embracing Chaos and Maddy at Whitterer on Autism. Casdok at Mother of Shrek has a 22 year old autistic lad.

The now defunct FWD/ Forward: Feminists with Disabilities blog will remain an important resource long after the cobwebs are formed. Former contributors include another academic Anna at Trouble is a State of Mind, US military veteran Ouyang Dan at Random Babble, Annaham at Ham Blog and Lauredhel at the big Austrailian feminist blog Hoyden about Town. There are lots of different feminist voices at Womanist Musings but Renee who runs the blog frequently writes about disability and how it intersects with race, gender and size. Bint Ashama at My Private Casbah is another important writer on disabiliy and race.

This second section doesn't mean to imply inferiority, but these are different kinds of blogs which contain different kinds of content and may be more specialist that those above. This is a difficult excercise so please forgive my struggle to categorise.

CDeb by Stephen WhiteheadNever That Easy and Diane at A Stellarlife are great writers about living with chronic illness.

Other academic bloggers who are worth reading about disability who I haven't mentioned above include Lilwatchergirl at Through Myself and Back Again, Naomi at Uncovering the Roof, Lili at Silly Legal, Miss Shuguah at Fumbling About in the Dark and Kethry at Urbania to Stoneheads who has recently returned to education.

Gary at AWTS, James at A Pretty Simple Blog and Makayla Lewis are the people to read about web accessibility.

Best disabled photographer I know of is my own amazing Stephen who blogs at Single Lens Reflections. Other disabled creative types include Rachel at Rachel Creative, Cusp at L'Ombre de mon Ombre, Katya Robin, Gaina at The Mouth on Wheels and embroiderer Elmsley Rose. See also the Disability Arts Online collection of blogs.

There is, of course, plenty disability community activity outside blogging, on Twitter, Tumblr and on forums and social networks throughout the web. But I think these folks I've listed here are a good place to start.


Emma said...

Cheryl at is the one that immediately springs to mind as you missing.

Kathryn at and Jacqui at both blog about their kids with CP.

I may try to do my own in a few days with tweeters on it as well - thanks for the idea!

And if Katya Robin is the same person I used to follow her blog about 9 years ago in a diffferent place. Interesting, had forgotten!

The Goldfish said...

Thanks Emma - as soon as I looked at my feedreader I saw Cheryl's latest post and thought, "How on Earth did I forget Cheryl?!"

I've set myself the rule that I shan't edit this post, otherwise I will be chipping away at it forever. However, should Cheryl see this, I apologise!

Kathryn and Jacqui I've come across before but some time ago, so thanks for the recommendation. :-)

Wheelchair Dancer said...

Shimmers .... Proud and honored to be included. You forgot yourself.



Deven Black (@devenkblack) said...

Thank you so much for including me on your august list, and in the same paragraph as the exceptional Ira Socol. I am chuffed!

Ouyang Dan said...

Thank you so much for your kind words because it is good to know we are well thought of for the work.

Please don't forget s.e. smith, who was integral to FWD's success, who writes at This Ain't Livin'.

Stephanie said...

I am honored to be included in your list and quite happy to see some new blogs to explore!

I also have some links I would include (and may write a response-post of my own soon):

Dave Hingsburger said...

Thanks so much for my inclusion in your list! I've already received several visitors based on your recomendation. I've always respected your work and your writing ... I'm honoured.

Gary Miller said...

Very flattered to be included in your list.

Many thanks!

Elizabeth McClung said...

thank you for the recommendations, I have found several sites of reading interest -

I also point out that two years without a GP, and then straight to Fentynal doesn't make me Pollyanna, but it does help me focus in different ways. Linda did a job interview, the interviewer had moved here over 18 months ago, and still did not have a GP.

Elton John is coming here in two weeks - the tickets sold in minutes, I was getting one to give to a friend, to trade the ticket for a GP. But no go.

I like Crip Strips.

BenefitScroungingScum said...

What a fantastic idea and brilliant resource for us all. Thanks so much for my lovely description, I may have to steal the phrase 'deathwalking diva' ;)
Hope you've got more spoons today BG Xx

Casdok said...

And i feel honored too. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Great post D!

I raise my glass to the unamed backroom guys, who help make it happen. And a small tot to the ones who've slipped into the dark side ;-)


Anonymous said...

Gee I certainly don't think of myself in the same category as sayyyyy.... YOU! I am so glad to get to know you though and participate in the Disability Carnival when it comes to town!
Thanks very much for the mention - joyful fully describes my views.
Oh, I've been doing a lot of lurking so In case I didn't tell you already- very proud of how you've gotten through such a hard year. It's so hard to branch out from a relationship!

incurable hippie said...

What an amazing list - I'm absolutely joyous to be included in it, thank you!

You've increased my google readers subscriptions by many dozen!!

Ole Ferme l'Oeil said...

If you want to know where is cripchick, apparently you will know more here:

Never That Easy said...

Wow, fishy: I'm honored to be included. And I came by to say thanks... for reading and for everything.

I'm definitely going to check out the new-to-me links. Thanks again for your comment - it means a lot.

IrrationalPoint said...

Honoured to be included, and curiously flattered by the description of "frugal feminist". Thanks also for compiling the list -- it'll supply me with reading for weeks to come!

I'm so sad about FWD closing up shop.


Ruth said...

Thanks for your kind mention.

So many many disability bloggers out there whose voices need to be heard - an ever growing circle.

Anonymous said...


I find it very uncomfortable that you recommended Renee at Womanist Musings, as she has said some very hurtful things about women with psychiatric disorders. There's this

"Perhaps I should consult with my doctor, and become yet another one of those over medicated Prozac twits, so that I can dull my feelings of genuine outrage every time women are treated like disposable bodies without any value. "

(It's an older example, but she's written much more recent stuff indicating those of us with psych disabilities are inferior and stupid for taking medication)

As someone with a psychiatric disability, whenever I see Renee recommended, I feel hurt and violated, as if those of us with psych disabilities don't matter.

The Goldfish said...

Thank you everyone. Another one I should add, who had gone quiet but reappeaered in my feed reader this morning is Andrea's Buzzing About who writes a lot about Asperger's, education and social theory.

Nomnivore, I'm very sorry that you should feel hurt.

I don't agree with everything in the blogs that I read. I don't agree with everything Renee says on various subjects, although I hadn't read anything quite like that before.

But I do think some of her current writing on disability is worth reading. I hope that her views have developed over the last three years. If they haven't, and I see more of that sort of thing, I will undoubtedly stop reading too.

Lisa said...

"sweetheart of the twitterati" made me laugh very loud.


Anonymous said...

Golfish, I wonder if you know that Elizabeth McClung doesn't like how you described her blog. You might want to change it.

The Goldfish said...

Anoymous, thank you for letting me know.

I've commented on the post you linked to. When I read Elizabeth's comment here, I didn't quite understand what she meant - I didn't understand she wasn't happy with what I'd put, which is me being dopey really.

I will change the description if Elizabeth asks me to.

EllenDeller said...

Hi there--tried to send an email but couldn't figure out how, so I hope you're reading posts! Thanks so much for your list of other blogs. Do you know of ANY from Ireland by disabled people? I can find only three in the whole country and am trying to figure out why. Any leads or thoughts? Thanks so much!

Blake Watson said...

Excellent! I was looking for a post like this. Thanks.

kethry said...

thanks for the link - a bit belatedly! shows how often i look at my stats - naughty kethie! but then, just about *everything* has gone to pot lately - its all been dumped in favour of getting essays done.. arggh!

some good links here - I'm now going to spend far too much time following them up.. but then, I need a break anyway. shh. that's what i'm justifying it as... !!!

Shiloh said...

I know this is a bit early, but I got to thinking about B.A.D.D. today and I would like to participate again this year.

Paula Apodaca said...

Yeah, so was I thinking on BADD, and want to participate with everyone again this year. So much to say...
I hope you will have me, as I wasn't named in or among your faves. Sniff-sniff.
Paula Apodaca
E. Is for Epilepsy

Paula Apodaca said...

May I play too!? I was thinking about BADD just today, as well, and though I was not listed among your faves for 2011, I would still like to contribute...
Sniff, sniff.
Paula Apodaca
E. Is for Epilepsy

Lateef McLeod said...

You forgot to put my blog down Lateef McLeod at

Penny L. Richards said...

Oh jeez, I'm just seeing this--so flattered! Thank you!