Reappraising disability in India: model, magnitude, and measurement

Dhiraj Kumar, Chittaranjan Subudhi


Defining and measuring the disability is critical social issue.  In the past, many social scientists including demographers, geographers and sociologists have attempted to define the term disability in their normative discipline sense.  In this paper, we have tried to reappraise disability from the significant earlier literature and discuss it in a revised manner. It is aptly argued that disability seems to a fluid state or condition and the ontological strand of the concept is modified, redefined over the time. The bodily art of the paper covers the conceptual definition of disability and its related models, statistical density and magnitude of disability that is particularly based on different categories including gender and the urban rural distinction of India. Disability as a socio-cultural term and a lived experience doesn’t promote change. So, the wide complex issues of the disability are also discussed in the kaleidoscope of developmental issues to show the disadvantages posed by disability through social meaning and the politics of normalcy. It has been suggested that there is a need to reframed disability with conceptual reference to sick role, deviance or functional limitation and the term should not be used without denoting the socio-cultural phenomenon.


Disability; Development; Model; Perspective

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ISSN: 2454-6623