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Tech and the City: Author/designer Sara Hendren in conversation with disability activist Rosemarie Garland-Thomson, cosponsored by Gray Area and Goethe-Institut SF
Nearly everything human beings make and use is assistive technology, meant to bridge the gap between body and world. Yet, unless there is a misfit between our own body and the world acute enough to be understood as disability, we never stop to consider the hidden assumptions about how our everyday environment is built and created. Using vivid stories drawn from the lived experience of disability and the ideas and innovations that have emerged from it—from cyborg arms to customizable cardboard chairs to deaf architecture —Sara Hendren invites us to rethink the objects and settings we live with.
Sara Hendren is an artist and thinker working at the intersection of design and disability. An associate professor of design at Olin College in Massachusetts, Hendren is a former National Fellow at New America, a sought-after speaker, and a widely exhibited artist with works held in the permanent collections at MoMA and the Cooper Hewitt museum. In What Can A Body Do? How We Meet the Built World, Hendren offers a wise and personable guide for the critical moments when the design of the world meets the misfit conditions of our bodies. (Photo by Freddie Hendren Funck)
Rosemarie Garland-Thomson is a disability justice and culture thought leader, bioethicist, teacher, and humanities scholar. Her 2016 editorial, “Becoming Disabled,” was the inaugural article in the ongoing weekly series in the New York Times about disability by people living with disabilities.She is a professor of English and bioethics at Emory University, where she teaches disability studies, bioethics, American literature and culture, and feminist theory.
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