The Pedagogy of Pathologization: Dis/abled Girls of Color in the School-Prison Nexus

Subini Ancy Annamma’s The Pedagogy of Pathologization: Dis/abled Girls of Color in the School-Prison Nexus portrays the processes and social factors that place the bodies of multiply-marginalised dis/abled women of colour in the criminal justice system, while also putting the voices and experiences of these individuals at the centre of the book. Annamma adopts Beth Ritchie’s (2012) notion of a ‘prison nation’ and situates schools within this in order to understand how a ‘societal goal’ for public education is to fill prisons.

Throughout, Annamma chooses the term ‘dis/abled’ to signify ability as based on social context, continually shifting over time, rather than as a fixed state. In reference to her subjects, Annamma uses the word ‘girls’, though they are well into their teenage, secondary school years. In her discussions, Annamma demonstrates a commitment to intersectionality and DisCrit, which calls for a critical lens that recognises the ways that race and dis/ability are socially constructed interdependently with material, social and political impacts. Annamma employs this lens in order to understand the process behind the creation of the criminal identity in the juvenile incarceration centre and to create a pedagogy of resistance.

Read more about The Pedagogy of Pathologization on LSE’s US website.

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