Lecture 1 Disabilities in History.docx

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Education - Special Education, School Psychology and Early Childhood Studies
EEX 2000
Penny Cox

1/7/14 Historical Perspectives on Disabilities  References to people with disabilities are found in accounts related to • Social Circumstances • Public Policies and practices • Judicial Records Ancient Civilizations ♦ Different Terms: Mongoloids, Ewinger, Lame, Retarded • 800 B.C. : Spartans decided if weak children would be raised or left to die • 449 B.C: Twelve Tables of Rome- Put children whose form is different from other humans to death. (physical abnormality=death) father kills child. • 400 B.C.: Hippocrates-Argued that epilepsy was not a curse caused by the gods. • 360 B.C.: Plato’s Republic allowed for selective breeding to improve society and eliminate weakness/defectiveness MiddleAges  15 Century: Court Jestors- People with mental/physical disabilities  1494: ‘The Hammer of the Witches’Seizures were indicative of being ‘against god’Endorsed by the pope. (Seizures were an indication of possession by the devil) ModernAges  1600’s Elizabethan poor laws: Refer to ‘impotent poor” – People who were poor because they were unable to do work to support themselves (Disabilities, such as blindness/physical disabilities that do not allow individuals to work)  Supported provisions for care for the disabled such as creating boarding/institutional housing.  ****1824:Almshouses (poor houses) opened in New York : Provided disabled with food and shelter. Mostly created to get disabled off the street; segregate disabled from society.  ‘For lunatics, idiots, and epileptics’  1854: New YorkAsylum for Idiots Established  1866: Idiot school opened at Randall Island  1840: P.T. Barnum’s freak show started: Featured people with physical differences as forms of entertainment: EX: Bearded lady  ****1845 Dorthea Dix (nurse): works to establish separate facilities for people with mental disabilities and mental illness (removin
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