The Disabled Gaze: Rethinking the Past, Remaking the Future

October 24, 2023 6:30 pm

Town Hall Seattle, Livestream (Hybrid)

Video Archive

Headshot of Jaipreet Virdi, a middle eastern woman with long dark hair, gold earrings, and wearing a black blazer


How do disabled people use their technologies to draw attention to, rather than hide, their disability? The disabled gaze is an autonomous claiming of identity that rejects typical perceptions of disability as objectifying or exploitative. It offers a way to examines how disabled people, past and present, asserted themselves—through art, for instance—or challenged medical assumptions about their bodies.  

What happens when we center the disabled gaze in our creations of the future? In this talk, Dr. Jaipreet Virdi asks us to consider how being disabled changes the ways people view the world and the things they create. Through these perspectives, she invites alternative approaches for remaking crip worlds, one in which disabled people, and the disabled gaze, are centered first and foremost.   

The lecture will be accompanied by an ASL interpreter and will include CART captioning.

Watch the replay

About the speaker

Jaipreet Virdi

Associate Professor, Department of History at the University of Delaware

Jaipreet Virdi is a scholar activist and Associate Professor in the Department of History at University of Delaware. Her first book, Hearing Happiness: Deafness Cures in History raises pivotal questions about deafness in American society and the endless quest for a cure. Her writing has appeared in Slate, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, Psyche, The Wellcome Collection, and the New Internationalist. She is on Twitter as @jaivirdi 

Event Accessibility

The University is committed to providing access, equal opportunity, and reasonable accommodation in its services, programs, activities, education, and employment for individuals with disabilities. To request disability accommodations, contact the UW Disability Services Office at least 10 days in advance at 206-543-6450 (voice), 206-543-6452 (TTY), 206-685-7264 (fax), or