Decloaking Disability Bibliography



This annotated bibliography is a work in progress which attempts to explore the intersection of disability and technology within texts from the genres of science fiction and the literature of the fantastic.

Themes and tropes:

Annotations include an indication of reoccurring themes and tropes such as the cyborg, queer bodies, genetic engineering, perception and reality, virtuality and/or escape from embodiment, invasion of the mind/body, difference and the formation of non-traditional social groups.

Text selection process:

Due to the large number of possible texts which could qualify for this list, texts included in this bibliography also possess a couple of additional characteristics for inclusion:
1. At least one of the main characters possesses a disability
2. the text should be a significant work within the genre of science fiction and/or the literature of the fantastic. Final choices were based upon a combination of award lists, suggestions from fans, and personal judgement.


Aldiss, Brian. "Super-Toys Last All Summer Long." Harper's Bazaar, Dec. 1969.
This story includes a number of disability and non-normative bodies: the use of biotechnology to reaffirm traditional cultural norms of beauty and the use of engineered life forms as a servant class which is considered "less than human." Most intriguing, however, is the characterization of the non-normative behavior of the engineered boy as it resembles Aspergers and the interrogation of "real" versus "simulation." Later adapted for Stanley Kubrick's movie "AI."
etext available online at the Wired Web site (August 22, 2006)
etext also available online at The Kubrick Site (August 20, 2006)

Asimov, Isaac. "The Mule." (Astounding Nov. & Dec. 1945).
In this short story which would become the basis for the second and third books of Asimov's Foundation trilogy, the title character is a self-described "freak" who possesses abnormal mental powers which he uses to influence the emotions of others in order to create his own empire, The Mule resembles the title character of Shakespeare's play Richard III in that his plot to become ruler is described as revenge for being mocked and rejected due to his disability. Also similar to Richard III, the Mule's disability is strongly linked to the disruption of social order.
Further information about The Mule, including a physical description, can be found in this (August 20, 2006) Wikipedia entry for The Mule

Asimov, Isaac. "The Secret Sense." Originally published in Cosmic Stories March 1941, also found in The Early Asimov (Doubleday, 1972).
Short story which is really a prolonged dialogue between an Earthman who openly pities and condescends to a Martian for not having the sensory apparatus to appreciate the colors and sounds the Earth man defines as the basis for his aesthetic of beauty. The "secret sense" refers to the alternate sense of perception the Martian experiences but realizes is futile to explain to the Earth man. Underscores how cultural aesthetics and environment shape concepts of perception and reality while strongly conveying how difference is framed as "less than human."

Baker, Kage. "Empress of Mars." originally published in Asimov's July 2003.
Short story which has a character who possesses both a prosthetic eye and prophetic abilities, though overall difference in body and ehavior is closely linked with frontiers and resistance to empire.

Baum, L. Frank. The Patchwork Girl of Oz. (Reilly & Britton Co., 1913).
The title character is an engineered girl who is literally made to be a servant and who is often mocked for both the difference of her physical appearance and for her refusal to see herself as an object to be pitied.
etext available online through Project Gutenberg (August 20, 2006)
Also refer to the Internet Movie Database entry for the 1914 movie of The Patchwork Girl of Oz (August 20, 2006)

Bear, Elizabeth. Hammered (New York: Bantam 2005).
Female protagonist possesses a number of prosthetics in a noir world of military and corporate espionage. One of the best novels where the noir setting and sensibility provides a sense of the techno-gothic.

Borges, Jorge Luis. "Poem of the Gifts" can be found in Borges: A Reader. eds. Emir Rodriguez Monegal and Alastair Reid (New York: E. P. Dutton, 1981).
Borges's poem on blindness and identity becomes a meditation on alternate selves and secret histories, subjects upon which Borges remains one of the masters. Borges often wrote of himself as a multiplicity of selves, and his work has been a major influence on many science fiction and fantasy writers. Themes of light/dark, identity, and the disabled individual's role in society; this poem can also be compared to
John Milton's Sonnet "On His Blindness (August 20, 2006)

Bramah, Ernest. Max Carrados Storie originally published in the 1910s, can be found in Best Max Carrados Detective Stories (New York: Dover, 1972).
Max Carrados was the main character in a number of stories still considered to be vintage detective fiction. The first blind detective, whose senses are so sensitive that he can read a newspaper by running his fingertips over the print, Max was also the first of many disabled detectives whose uncanny mental abilities are framed as a "compensation" for their disabled bodies, and the disabled detective remains such a popular trope in detective fiction that it can be counted its own subgenre. For an example, refer to Jeffrey Deaver's paraplegic character, Lincoln Rhyme, most notable in The Bone Collector (New York: Viking, 1997) which was later adapted into a movie. The title character in Kim Stanley Robinson's short story "The Blind Geometer" references Max Carados throughout, and Jessica Amanda Salmonson essay "A Delicate Bouquet of Crime" in which she explores how the blind detective stories overlap with science fiction and supernatural fiction
etext of four Max Carrados stories available online from Project Gutenberg (August 20, 2006) and also an etext of The Game Played In the Dark from the Gaslight Web site (August 20, 2006)
A complete bibliography can be found on the Ernest Bramah Web site (August 22, 2006)

Brunner, John. The Whole Man. (Walker & Co., 1964).
Gerald Howson is a disabled man living in the near future who discovers he possesses telepathic abilities which can be used to "cure" not only other disabled individuals but the social disorder caused by riots and revolutions. Nominated for a 1965 Hugo, this story also develops the idea of virtuality and virtual worlds.

Bujold, Lois McMaster. The Warrior's Apprentice. (New York: Baen, 1986).
Miles Vorkosigan is a young man with multiple disabilities whose ambition is to follow the tradition of his family by joining the military. His struggle to succeed and feel accepted by his conservative society parallels the struggles of those around him, including a traumatized ex-soldier and his daughter, a gestalt pilot and other non-normative bodies. Other aspects of this novel include queer bodies and a society seeking stability after social and technological changes.

Bujold, Lois McMaster. Falling Free. (New York: Baen 1988).
Originally serialized in Analog, Dec '87-Feb '88, this Nebula winner follows a group of engineered humans created as a servant class for outer space corporations as they struggle toward becoming independent of their creators.

Bujold, Lois McMaster. Beguilement: The Sharing Knife Volume 1 (New York: EOS, October 2006).
A young woman running away from the restrictiveness of a traditional family meets a disabled man whose culture uses their mental abilities to protect the earth and its inhabitants from monsters which use their own mental powers to turn humans and animals into zombie-like servants. Themes of mental and bodily invasion and difference as "less than human."

Bull, Emma. Bone Dance. (New York: Ace, 1991).
Themes of the non-normative and queer body overlap as the protagonist struggles to remain hidden from a corrupt government and others who would try to exert control. Additional theme of media and its relationship to the creation of non-traditional social groups.

Bull, Emma. Falcon. (New York: Ace 1989).
A young disabled pilot with a gestalt link to his ship helps fight a corrupt government.

Butler, OCTAVIA E. "SPEECH SOUNDS," pp. 87-110, from Blood Child and Other Stories. (New York: Four Walls Eight Windows, 1995).
First published in Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine 1983, this story explores the role of communication in a post-apocalyptic society in which almost all inhabitants suffer from some variety of communicative disorder. Additional themes include difference and the formation of non-traditional families.

Byron, George Gordon. "The Deformed Transformed." Originally published in 1822, can also be found in Lord Byron: The Major Works (New York: Oxford University Press, 2000).
An intentionally-fragmentary play in which the main character, who has multiple disabilities, accepts the offer from a mysterious spirit to exchange his body for that of a famous person from history. Additional themes include revolution and social disorder, colonialism, and escape from embodiment.
etext available online (August 20, 2006)

Caidin, Martin. Cyborg. (New York: Ballantine, 1972).
Military test pilot becomes disabled after a crash but, provided with a number of prosthetic body parts by a secret government agency, becomes a cyborg spy. This novel was the basis for the 1970s television show "The Six Million Dollar Man," and includes themes of gender roles, surveillance and control.

Cherryh, C. J. Wave Without a Shore. (Daw 1981).
On a planet named Freedom, reality is considered to be what you make it. When a sculptor creates a masterpiece, a politician has the artist's hands broken so that the artist can never create another version of that reality, forcing the disabled man to flee to an alien society which has remained "invisible" to the dominant culture. The images of disability and difference are used to highlight the "sick rose" of the corrupt society in which the artist lives.

Coyote and other trickster tale.
Themes of non-normative bodies and non-conformity to traditional social attitudes and aesthetics are what make trickster figures such perfect culture heros, and the trickster's inventive and transformative powers have crossed over into many aspects of the cyborg, as highlighted in the work of Donna Haraway.
etext of Terri Windling's essay "Wile E. Coyote and Other Sly Trickster Tales" can be found online
Also note an upcoming anthology Coyote Road: Trickster Tales, edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling (Viking, 2007).
In this online text of an autobiographical essay, I describe how science fiction as a genre provides a mode for telling trickster tales about disability and technology: Part I Part II

Crispin, A. C. Starbridge (Ace 1989) and the rest of The Starbridge series, including Silent Dances and Silent Songs.
Deaf characters.

The Darth Side: Memoirs of a Monster (Darth Vader's Blog).
Humorous take on the everyday trials and tribulations of being a cyborg including misbehaving prosthetics framed within the plot of invasion, surveillance and control, and empire.
etext (August 20, 2006)

Davison, Al. The Minotaur's Tale. (Dark Horse Comics 1992). Graphic novel by an artist with spina bifida which uses the myth of the Minotaur to tell the story of a man with multiple disabilities and the disfigured female doctor who becomes involved with him. Themes of queer bodies, non-normativity, and non-traditional social groups.

Davison, Al. The Spiral Cage. (Renegade Press 1988).
Davison's autobiographical story about growing up with a disability. Theme of the cage is applied not only to the body, but to the technological devices which attempt to force the body to conform and the social attitudes which restrict access and creative ability.
Davison's home page (August 20, 2006)

Dick, Philip K. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?. (Del Rey 1968.
In the near-future L.A., the only inhabitants left within the city are those who failed the physical tests which qualify them to ascend to the utopian colonies of outer space. Thus, all the characters in this novel, upon which the movie "Blade Runner" was based, can be described as disabled. The engineered "replicants" return to this derelict city in order to avenge themselves upon their creators. Themes include the use of tests and diagnosis to determine who is "human," technology as invasion and control, and the city as body.

Disch, Thomas. "On Science Fiction" (1981). Can be found in Nebula Award Stories 17.
In this poem which won the Rhysling Award for best long poem of 1981, Disch offers a complex exploration of science fiction's fascination with the non-normativity of disabled bodies as part of a response to John Varley's 1973 award-winning story "The Persistance of Vision."

Doctorow, Cory. "Thought Experiments: When the Singularity is More Than a Literary Device: An Interview with Futurist-Inventor Ray Kurzweil." (Asimov's June 200)5
Kurzweil is the inventor of many technology devices for people with disabilities, but he contextualizes this work within the larger discourse of using technology to transcend human limitations, including illness and aging.
Interview online at the Asimov's Web site (August 20, 2006)

Doctorow, Cory. Down and Out In the Magic Kingdom. (2003).
Protagonist goes through a number of physical and technological transformations. Themes include downloadable consciousness, the use of media technology to form non-traditional groups.
etext available in many formats including a podcast on Cory's Web site (August 20, 2006)

Donaldson, Stephen Thomas the Covenant series.

Egan, Greg. Reasons To Be Cheerful," originally published in Interzone #118, 1997. Can also be found in Luminouw (Orion/Millennium, 1998).
As a result of a brain tumor, a young boy experiences happiness and optimism; while he physically cured once the tumor is removed, he then suffers from severe depression and finally searches for a cure which will restore happiness.

Ellison, Harlan. "A Boy and His Dog." Originally published in 1969, can be found in The Beast That Shouted Love At the Heart of the World (New York: Avon, 1969).
A young man with a psychic link to his dog relies upon the dog's abilities in order to survive in a post-apocalyptic world. Not your usual service animal story, but it is one of many science fiction texts which use relationships between people and animals to challenge the liberal humanist ideal of the independent and self-reliant citizen.

Eskridge, Kelley. "Alien Jane." Originally published in 1995, can be found in Nebula Awards 31 (New York: Harcourt Brace, 1997).
Short story about a woman who cannot feel pain and the medical researchers who experiment upon her. This story can be compared/contrasted to Tiptree's "Painwise" in regard to the theme of science as dissection and disassembling but also explores the theme of the suffering of others (refer to Susan Sontag's The Pain of Others).
Introduction by the author
and the etext can be found online at the author's Web site (August 20, 2006)

Ford, Jeffrey. "The Empire of Ice Cream." Can be found in the collection The Empire of Ice Cream (Golden Gryphon, 2006).
2003 Nebula Award-winning Story which uses the experiences of a young musician with synesthesia to explore society's attitudes toward non-normativity. Themes also include the "secret sense" or non-normative sensory perception and the construction of reality.
etext available online at the Web site (August 20)

Gardner, James Allen. Expendable. (New York: EOS, 1997).
In the first book of this series, the female protagonist is part of a government-supported military corp of disabled and disfigured explorers who are sent on the most dangerous missions because their deaths are perceived as less emotionally traumatic to the society. Themes include corrupt government, colonialism, and difference as "less than human."

Gibson, William. Burning Chrome. (Arbor House, 1986).
This collection of short stories contains three stories with disabled characters in them: including the title story, which features "Automatic Jack," a "mean-looking guy" with a prosthetic arm. The two other stories are "Gomi," in which a young woman who must exist in a cage-like exoskeleton uses a new musical technology to escape embodiment and "Dogfight," a collaboration with Michael Swanwick, in which a man manipulates others in order to participate in a virtual game which is used to acquire social status; the big fight happens with a character named Tiny who is confined to a wheelchair and is described by another character as someone who "lives for that goddamned game, ain't got nothing else. Can't get out of that goddamned chair."
This collection also contains the story "Johnny Mnemonic" which would become the basis for Gibson's novel Neuromancer.
As in many Gibson stories, themes of lack and invasion are expressed through the techno-gothic bodies of the characters which reflect the urban ruins of the cities in which they dwell and the virtual landscapes which they escape to.

Haldeman, Joe. "None So Blind." (1996)
Protagonist's is a scientist who falls in love with a blind woman whose unused visual cortex, he hypothesizes, offers the possibility of attaining extraordinary mental abilities.

Hand, Elizabeth. "Chip Crockett's Christmas Carol." Originally published in 2000, can also be found in the novella collection Bibliomancy (PS Publishing, 2003).
Protagonist has a son with autism and a shared television show from the protagonist's own childhood provides a shared mode for the parent and child to communicate with each other.
etext available online at the Web site (August 22, 2006)

Henderson, Zenna. Ingathering: The Complete People Stories of Zenna Henderson. (NESFA Pres, 1995).
Originally written between 1952 and 1975, these stories are about a group of humanoid refugees from another planet who land in the nineteenth-century American Southwest. As in the case of John Varley's "The Persistence of Vision," the southwestern setting suggests how difference and non-normativity are linked to the idea of frontiers and non-traditional social groups.

Heinlein, Robert. "The green Hills of Earth." Originally published in the Feb. 8, 1947, issue of The Saturday Evening Post.
This story features Rhysling, after whom the science fiction poetry prize was named. Every culture, it seems, must locate or create a blind bard to speak for it with the voice of authority.
Read one of Rhysling's most famous ballads on The Minstrels Poetry Archive (August 22, 2006) while this essay by Greg Beatty on the Strange Horizons Web site contextualizes how the blind poet romanticizes space (August 22, 2006)

Heinlein, Robert. "Waldo." from The Fantasies of Robert A. Heinlein (New York: Tor, 1999).
Waldo is not only the name of the disabled engineer in this story, but the name has come to be used for any mechanical arm such as the ones used by the title character. Themes include the role of the citizen in society, faith versus science, and the role strength of will plays in the discourse of medical cure.

"The Hook"
This urban legend demonstrates the most basic stereotype of disabled characters as "natural" villains. Note how the trope of the hook or technological hand is also associated with violent insanity, making this nameless character a close relation to such science fiction villains as Rotwang in "Metropolis," the mad general in "Dr. Strangelove," and Darth Vader in "Star Wars" movies. Themes of bodily invasion and loss of humanity through mechanization remain consistent in these images.
etext version of this story can be found on The Urban Legends Web site (August 20, 2006)

James, P. D. The Children of Men. Originally published in 1992, can be found in a reprint edition (Vintage, 2006).
In a distopian future England infertility has resulted in a rapidly decreasing population where the infirm and aging undergo social pressure to commit mass suicide in a ritual called "The Quietus," which turns out to be mass murder. One of the protagonists is a woman with a deformed hand, (although in an upcoming movie version, this heroine is played by a woman of color) who becomes pregnant by a man with epilepsy, despite the fact that people with disabilities are not full citizens and thus are not allowed to have children. Themes include how a slave class is justified by defining those with non-normative bodies as "less than human."

Kadrey, Richard. Blind Shrike. Published in 2005 through a Creative Commons License.
The protagonist is rescued from a demon by a blind swordswoman, but after the protagonist begins to see ghosts and mythological creatures, the blind swordswoman becomes his guide through an alternate San Francisco and the Bardo realm to discover who is trying to kill him. Trope of the blind swordsman/warrior represents another aspect of the uncanny knowledge possessed by the blind and their ability to see into alternate realities.
etext Available online at The Infinite Matrix Web site (August 20, 2006)

Kastle, Herbert D. The Reassembled Man. (Greenwich, Conn.: Fawcett, 1964).
Aliens rebuild a human man but, despite giving him all the abilities he desires, they get the body just a little bit wrong. Themes include body image, queer bodies, and gender roles.

Kay, Guy Gavriel. The Summer Tree, first in The Fionavar Tapestery series. (McClelland & Stewart, 1984).
First book in a trilogy of epic fantasy which makes use of a number of mythological tropes, including a blind seer and an evil one-handed god.
Also refer to A Song for Arbonne. (Viking, 1992), in which one of the main characters is a blind seeress.

Keats, John. "Ode On a Grecian Urn." Can be found in English Romantic Verse, edited by David Wright (New York: Penguin, 1968).
Keats's poem, like W. B. Yeats's poem "Sailing to Byzantium," offers a complex set of images regarding beauty, immortality, and organic versus technological objects.
etext available online from The Minstrels Poetry Archive (August 20, 2006)

Keyes, Daniel. "Flowers For Algernon." Originally published in the Apr. 1959 issue of The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction.
This short story features a mentally-impaired man who undergoes an experiment which transforms him into a genius, a transformation made more poignant by the story format of personal journal entries and the man's love for his female teacher.

McCaffrey, Anne. The Ship Who Sang. (Ballantine, 1969).
The opening line of this work makes a disturbing comment on the way the "test" us used to exclude disabled beings from being defined as human: "She was born a thing and as such would be condemned if she failed to pass the encephalograph test required of all newborn babies." To some degree this entire series represents the unending series of tests and legal battles with definitions which dictate and diagnose the role of disabled people in society. Themes also include the body as prosthetic and the technological prosthetics of everyday, such as the magnifying lens and the computer screen.
Helva, the main character, is a female human-spaceship cyborg who falls in love with her male pilot. The rather traditional romantic plot and the gender roles make this an interesting text to compare to the spy-thriller of Caidin's Cyborg, which came out a few years later.

McCaffrey, Anne, and Stirling, S.m. The City Who Fought. (Fawcett 1993).
Simeon is a shell person like Helva, but instead of merely manipulating a ship, he is the caretaker for an entire space port. Themes of the body as prosthetic, the city as body, and non-traditional social groups.

McElroy, Joseph. Plus. (Knopf 1976).
Dying man has his consciousness transplanted into a satellite but he transforms into something more than a human consciousness. Themes include transformation, more than human, virtuality, escape from embodiment.

McHugh, Maureen F. Mothers and Other Monsters. (Small Beer Press, 2006).
This collection of short stories contains a number of stories in which disability intersects with technology and identity.
Frankenstein's Daughter can be found online at the Web site (August 20, 2006)

Moon, Elizabeth. The Speed of Dark. (Ballantine, 2003).
Main character is autistic. Themes include non-normativity and the struggle to maintain identity.

Moorcock, Michael. The Elric Saga. A five book series, the first book was Elric of Melnibon (Daw, 1972).
Elric of Melnibon‚ is an albino anti-hero, one of a series of non-normative characters in Moorcock's Eternal Cahmpion series. Elric's disability causes him to turn to drugs, necromancy, and a soul-stealing sword. Along with the setting of the dying Dreaming City of which he is ruler, provides themes of the city as body, resistance to empire, and alternate realities.

Moore, C. L. "No Woman Born." Originally published in Astounding Science Fiction, December 1944.
After an accident, a beautiful actress has a new prosthetic body built for herself. Themes of the cyborg body, aesthetics of beauty, and gender.

Niven, Larry. Flatlander: The Collected Tales of Gil "The Arm" Hamilton. (Del Rey, 1995). Originally published in 1976.
In this collection of noir detective stories originally published in the 1960s, the title character is an investigator who has a transplanted arm and a "psychic" arm. Many of the crimes the detective investigates involve how the poor become "fodder" for replacement parts for the rich in a process known as "organ legging," making this one of the earliest texts to consider how wealth privileges access to medical technology. Themes also include aesthetics of form versus function as a manifestation of social status.

Oates, Joyce Carol. "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?"
One of the best retellings of the traditional Demon Lover story, the handsome young man is marked by the wrongness of his feet. Themes of invasion and marks of difference as demonic/alien.
Interview with Oates explaining the traditional sources of this story

Padgett, Lewis (Catherine Lucille Moore and Henry Kuttner). "Mimsy Were the Borogoves." Originally published in 1943.
Two of the main character's are a brother and a sister who have their thinking/behavior affected by a set of alien toys, and whose parents subsequently have them examined by a child psychologist.

Philbrick, Rodman. The Last Book In the Universe. (New York: Blue Sky Press, 2000).
Spaz, a young epileptic boy, lives in a future world where the class system is made of "proovs," "normals," and "defs" (defectives). One of many young adult science fiction novels with similar themes of children who struggle with social labels of being "less than" or "more than" human.

Poe, Edgar Allan. "The Man That Was Used Up." Originally published in 1850.
The narrator interviews a famous soldier/explorer who turns out to be a man with multiple disabilities who has numerous prosthetics. Themes of gender and the masculine body, compare to the ballad "Virgin Only Nineteen Years Old," about a beautiful young woman who turns out to be a hag with various cosmetic prosthetics.
etext of Poe's story available online (August 22, 2006)
Article on the "false parts" theme in ballads

Powers, Tim. Three Days To Never. (New York: Harper Collins, 2006).
One of the main characters is a blind psychic who can see through the eyes of others. Themes of body and mind invasion, society in disorder, and queer bodies.

Renard, Maurice. The Hands of Orlac (Les Mains d'Orlac), originally published in 1920.
The original evil transplanted body parts story in which a pianist receives the transplanted hands of a murderer only to himself become possessed by the desire to kill. The story was most famously adapted into the movie "Mad Love." Renard wrote many of this sort of story--a subgenre of science fiction which overlaps with the modern medical thriller-- including "The Phony Man" (1923( in which a blind man receives a prosthetic eye graft, only to find he now possesses a secret sense which allows him to perceive an alternate realm of reality. Themes of body and mind invasion, alternate realities, and madness predominate.
Arthur Evans discusses Renard's work in this article from Science Fiction Studies, #64, Volume 21, Part 3, November 1994

Resnick, Mike. "Kirinyaga," from Kirinyaga: A Fable of Utopia, pp. 11-32. (New York: Del Rey, 1998).
A short story about a group which hopes to maintain a dying Earth culture, but clashes with the empire which monitors them when the group's leader must follow tradition and kill a disabled infant. Complex work which questions the euphemisms which surround our own modern culture's traditions such as genetic counseling and nursing homes which devalue the disabled.

Robeson, Kenneth. Doc Savage: The man of Bronze.

Robinson, Kim Stanley. "The Blind Geometer," pp. 426-75, The Mammoth Book of Modern Science Fiction (New York: Carroll & Graf Publishers, 1993).
Short story in which the title character has only his own intelligence to rely upon when he becomes tangled in a secret conspiracy. The story references two other classic mystery thrillers which feature blind protagonists: the movie "Wait Until Dark" and the early 20th century Max Carrados series. Robinson's prose uses the language of geometry to explore perception and knowledge of what remains unseen.

Ruff, Matt. Set This House In Order. (New York: Harper Collins Publishers, 2003).
The story uses multiple voices two narrate how the two protagonists, both of whom have multiple personality disorder, attempt to make sense of the world and their own inner landscapes. Themes include virtuality and queer bodies.

Rushdie, Salman. The moor's Last Sigh. (New York: Vintage, 1995).
"The Moor" is the nickname of the title character, whose body is marked by numerous signs of non-normativity, from the dark skin which gives him his name to an arm which ends in a club-like form instead of a hand. Rushdie uses disability to explore the social disorder caused by the clashing groups which constitute India's many cultures and political conflicts. Themes include the non-normative body as trickster figure and disability as social disorder.

Russ, Joanna. "The Little Dirty Girl," pp. 1-22, from The Hidden Side of the Moon. (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1988). Also can be found in The Armless Maiden. (1995).

Russ, Joanna. "Towards an Aesthetic of Science Fiction." Science Fiction Studies Volume 2, Part 2, Number 6 (July 1975): pages 112-119.
In this essay, Russ attempts to define some of the defining characteristics of science fiction, a number of which illuminate the intersection of disability and technology. For instance, in many SF stories, disabled characters form non-traditional groups and collectives which, though the reason springs from the need for cooperation, reflects, as Russ states, "...despite superficial similarities to naturalistic (or other) modern fiction, the protagonists of science fiction are always collective, never individual persons (although individuals often appear as exemplary or representative figures)."
This article can be found on the Science Fiction Studies Journal Web site

Saramago, Jose. Blindness.

Shakespeare, William. Richard III.

Shakespeare, William. "The Tempest." (1610)
The two characters of Ariel (the disembodied but "good" spirit) and Caliban (the disformed amphibious monster) provide a dichotomy which reappears again and again in the characterization of good versus evil as disembodiment versus deformity and the prison of the body. For an example of this, refer to "Is There In Truth No Beauty?" and Tim Powers's Three Days To Never, which both reference The Tempest.
etext available online (August 22, 2006)
Robert Browning's poem "Caliban Upon Setibos" further illuminates the theme of mortals and monsters attempting to "play god" in their own small worlds.
Also refer to Shakespeare's Caliban: A Cultural History by Alden T. Vaughan and Virginia Mason Vaughan. (Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 1991).

Shelley, Mary. Frankenstein. (1818).
This early science fiction text is also noteworthy for its images of the non-normative disabled body, and the character of Frankenstein's engineered being as disabled becomes increasingly underscored in the theatrical and film adaptations of this text, where one of the aspects which make the creature "monstrous" is his inability to communicate.
etext and additional study resources available at the University of Virginia Etext Center (August 22, 2006)

Silverberg, Robert. "Sailing to Byzantium," pp. 316-377
Themes include engineered beings, aesthetics of beauty, and the use of technology to prolong mortality. Refer to Yeats's poem "Sailing to Byzantium," link to online text of the poem included below.

Simmons, Dan. Children of the Night. (1992).
Two of the main characters are a female scientist attempting to discover a cure for a "vampire" infant an a male amputee. Themes include the devastation of war, government corruption, and the formation of non-traditional families.

Stephenson, Neil. Snow Crash. (Bantam Books 1992).
A number of characters use prosthetics to enhance/alter their abilities. Other themes include virtuality and the use of media technology to form social groups.

Sterling, Bruce. Introduction to Mirrorshade, from Mirrorshades: The Cyberpunk Anthology, ed. Bruce Sterling. (Arbor House 1986). Also reprinted in Storming the Reality Studio: A Casebook of Cyberpunk, Larry McCaffery, editor. Durham: Duke UP, 1991. pp. 343-348.
Classic cyberpunk manifesto which discusses technology as ordinary,

Stevenson, Robert Louis. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

Stross, Charles. "Tourist." Originally in: Asimovs Feb 2002.
MacX, the main character, becomes "disabled" when his wearable devices are stolen

Sturgeon, Theodore. "Baby Is Three." Originally published in Galaxy, October 1953, and the basis of the novel More Than Human. New York: Farrar, Strauss, and Young, 1953.
A group of individuals with various disabilities form a network in order to survive

Tiptree, James, Jr. "The Girl Who Was Plugged In," from Warm Worlds and Otherwise. (1973).
Disabled girl becomes part of an experiment which creates a simulacra of the subject which can live in the world "normally"

Tiptree, James, Jr. "Painwise."
Being is subjected to pain and multiple deaths in order that mysterious aliens may study the experience; compare to Eskridge's "Alien Jane."
etext available online at the Web site

Varley, John. "Blue Champagne."
Female protagonist must make hard ethical decisions in order to afford the exoskeleton device which allows her independence.

Varley, John. "The Persistence of Vision," pp. 228-270, The John Varley Reader, (New York Berkley Publishing Group 2004). Originally published in The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, March 1978.
A group of deaf-blind individuals form a society which decides that, in order to adapt and survive, they will have as few rules as possible. The physical setting of the American Southwest implies the frontier nature of such a society.

Vinge, Joan D. "Tin Soldier." Originally published in the collection Orbit 14 (Harper and Row, 1974), can be found in The Mammoth Book of Fantastic Science Fiction: Short Novels of the 1970s (New York: Carroll and Graf, 1992).
A former space pilot falls in love with a female pilot, whom he attempts to help adapt when she also becomes disabled.

Watts, Peter. Blindsight. (October 2006).
Group of beings with non-normative "freak" bodies, including disabilities, prosthetics, and genetic engineering, are sent to communicate with an alien entity. Themes of virtuality, escape from embodiment and invasion.

Wells, H. G. "The Country of the Blind." Originally published in The Strand, April 1904, also anthologized in The Country of the Blind and Other Stories.
The earlier version of this story shows a lost civilization of blind people who have created their own culture, and when a sighted explorer falls amongst them, they decide that he is disabled, and can be cured by making his body more "normal"...Revised in 1939, the later version is the one most often anthologized, as in Selected Stories of H. G. Wells, pp. 365, Ursula Le Guin, ed. Random House: New York, 2004. .
Other Wells stories contain many images of "crippled" or non-normative bodies, including "The Island of Dr. Moreau," "The Time Machine," and "War of the Worlds."
etext available online at Project Gutenberg (August 23, 2006)

Williams, Margery. The Velveteen Rabbit or, How Toys Become Real.
This seemingly simple children's story contains many of the ideas discussed more esoterically in SF stories, including concepts of real tversus simulation, experience and identity, pain, illness, and physical difference.
etext available online at Project Gutenberg (August 20, 2006)

Williams, Tad. Caliban's Hour. )Harper Audio, unabridged edition, 1995).
Another retelling of The Tempest from the perspective of Caliban. This audio version has an intertextual aspect as the reader, Ron Perlman, starred in the 1980s television show "Beauty and the Beast," which also overlaid images of non-normative bodies with social issues.

Wyndham, John. Day of the Triffids.
The protagonist, waking from an operation which has cured his blindness, discovers the majority of the world has been rendered blind by a strange meteor shower, and must avoid many dangers, including the roving bands of blind people who wish to make slaves of the sighted. Themes of invasion and social disorder predominate in this and many of Wyndham's other works, such as The Chrysilids (1955, later retitled Rebirth). According to the Web site for The John Wyndham Archive at the University of Liverpool Library these themes accounted for Wyndham's mainstream success in post-WWII Britain.

Wolfe, Bernard. Limbo. (New York: Random House, 1952).
Voluntary amputation is used as a form of social control in order to fend off war and social disorder.

Yeats, William Butler. "Sailing To Byzantium," from The Tower (1928).
etext available online at The Minstrels Poetry Archive (August 20, 2006).


AI. Stanley Kubrick

Alien. dir. Ridley Scott. 20th Century Fox and Brandywine Productions, 1979.

Aliens. dir. James Cameron. 20th Century Fox, Brandywine Productions and SLM Entertainment Ltd., 1986

Bladerunner. Ridley Scott. 1982.

City Lights. dir. Charles Chaplin. Charles Chaplin Productions, 1931.
Chaplin's "Little Tramp" offers an image of non-normative bodies, with his awkward walk, his odd mannerisms, and his cane, particularly within the context of the non-normative body and the city. Such images are doubled in this story of the Little Tramp falling in love with a beautiful blind girl.

Includes character based on blind physicist Kent Cullers, director of SETI

Daredevil. dir. Mark Steven Johnson. Marvel Enterprises, New Regency Pictures, Horseshoe Bay Productions, 20th Century Fox, Epsilon Motion Pictures, and Regency Enterprises, 2003. Films involving disabilities . [David Greenhalgh]
Web site which provides descriptions and classifications of movies featuring people with disabilities, and some additional commentary on the stereotypes and tropes of disability.

Dr Strangelove. Stanley Kubrick

Dr. Who

Edward Scissorhands

Finding Nemo

Freaks. dir. Tod Browning. MGM,1932.

Free Enterprise. dir. Robert Meyer Burnett. Mindfire Entertainment and Triad Studios, 1998.


Gods and Monsters

King Gimp
Web site of Dan Keplinger, a disabled artist who is the subject of the documentary "King Gimp." The site includes many writings and illustrations by the artist.

The Man Who Laughs (1928)
The film version was the basis for Sardonicus which ultimately inspired the look of The Joker, Batman's arch-nemesis.

Metropolis. dir. Fritz Lang. Universum Film A.G., 1927.

Minority Report



Shrek and Shrek 2

The Six Million Dollar Man. dir. Edward M. Abroms and Reza Badiyi. Harve Bennett Productions, Silverton Productions Inc., and Universal TV, 1974.

Sneakers. Phil Alden Robinson. Universal Studios. 1992.
One of the group of anti-heros is a blind hacker named Whistler, based upon a real-life blind hacker.

Star Wars. dir. George Lucas, 20th Century Fox and Lucasfilm Ltd., 1977.

The Thing. 1982.

Thing From Another World, The. dir. Christian Nyby. Winchester Pictures Corporation, 1951.

Twilight Zone "Eye of the Beholder"
A woman undergoes plastic surgery to cure her disfigurement.

The Village
both of these movies were directed by M. Night Shyamalan, who seems attracted to plots which feature people who possess physical or sensory differences, as in his first movie, The Sixth Sense. These secret senses are capable of both resolving and creating social disorder.


The most famous of the blind swordsmen/warriors.

Star Trek

Star Trek "The Cage" (original pilot episode)
also "The Menagerie"

"Is There In Truth No Beauty?" Star Trek Season 3, Episode 62. Original air date October 18, 1968. Written by Jean Lissette Aroeste; directed by Ralph Senensky.

"Spock's Brain"

Star Trek: The Next Generation. "Descent, Part I."
In an early scene of this episode, Stephen Hawking is shown in a holographic poker game with Sir Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein, and Data. Newton was the first occupant of the Lucasian Chair of Mathematics at the University of Cambridge, the position Hawking himself presently occupies, and the same position Data would ultimately occupy in the final episode of

Star Trek: The Next Generation, "All Good Things.". This position was also held by a blind mathematician Nicholas Saunderson, during Isaac Newton's lifetime, and Saunderson was largely responsible for Newton's ideas being made popularly comprehensible through his own teaching at Cambridge.)

Star Trek: The Next Generation Episode 32: "Loud As a Whisper"
Aired January 9, 1989.

Star Trek - The Next Generation, Episode 116: Ethics (1987)
Worf experiences the temporary disability trope

Literary and Cultural Studies Criticism

(including Science Fiction Studies, Disability Studies, and Science and Technology Studies)

Alaniz, Jos‚. "Supercrip: Disability and the Marvel Silver Age Superhero"
International Journal of Comic Art, (6:2), 2004 Fall, 304-24. (2004)

Bacon-Smith, Camille. Science Fiction Culture. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2000.
Cultural studies text concerned with the vocabularly and culture of science fiction fans.

Bemis, Virginia. Lois McMaster Bujold and disability
Discussion of disability images in the works of Lois McMaster Bujold's Vorkosigan series.

Bragg, Lois. Oedipus Borealis: The Aberrant Body In Old Icelandic Myth and Saga. Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, 2004.
Scandanavian scholar presents the argument that Norse myth and saga framed disabled people as culture heros rather than objects of pity; wide implications for anyone working in the literature of the fantastic, which has its own roots in many of these myths and legends.

Brooks, Rodney A. Flesh and Machines: How Robots Will Change Us. New York: Pantheon Books, 2002.
MIT professor explores the present and future possibilities of technological implants and prosthetics.

Bukatman, Scott. Blade Runner London BFI Publishing 1997.
Concise but clear work exploring many of the themes of "Blade Runner," including the images of the eye and the city.

Carver, Raymond. "Cathedral" Vital Lines: Contemporary Fiction About Medicine, Jon Mukand, ed. Ballantine: New York 1990. pp. 270-284.
Carver's story explores both stereotyped images of disability in the media and the possibilities of alternate forms of communication in conveying identity.

Chandler, Daniel. "Biases of the Ear and Eye."
Web site which provides an extensive reading list of resources that explore the intersections of disability and technology, including the social construction of reality through normative/non-normative sensory experience.

Cixous, Helene. "The Laugh of the Medusa," from Literature in the Modern World: Critical Essays and Documents Second Revised Edition, Dennis Walder, ed. pp. 291-301. New York: Oxford UP, 2004. This is a revised version of "Le rire de la meduse," which appeared in L'Arc (1975), pp. 39-54.
Cixous's classic text on feminist writing, particularly important to any discussion of revisionist fairy tales or other works of the fantastic which reference images of the female monster or madwoman.

Clark, Andy. Natural-Born Cyborgs: Minds, Technologies, and the Future of Human Intelligence. Oxford University Press
Clarke, a cognitive psychologist, has redefined the cyborg as someone whose body may be free of technolgical implants, but whose mode of thnking is influenced by technologies such as Google or wireless access. Highly recommended for anyone interested in concepts of the cyborg or posthuman body.
Introduction to Clarke's book

Carlson, Elof Axel. The Unfit: A History of a Bad Idea Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press; 1st edition (June 15, 2001)
Classic text on eugenics movement and how it continues to influence everything from military service to immigration laws.

Corker, Marian, and Shakespeare, Tom, eds. Disability/Postmodernity: Embodying Disability Theory. London: Continuum, 2002.
Collection of articles on media images of disability from a British disability studies perspective.

Davidson, Michael. Phantom Limbs: Film Noir and the Disabled Body - GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies 9:1-2. GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies 9.1-2 (2003) 57-77
Discusses disability within the context of detective and noir fiction.

Davis, Lennard J. Bending Over Backwards: Disability, Dismodernism, and Other Difficult Positions. New York: New York UP, 2002.
Davis explores the ways in which images of disability overlap with other marks of non-normativity.

De Certeau, Michele. "Walking In the City," in The Practice of Everyday Life, translated by Steven Rendall. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1984
Classic essay which contextualizes the body within the public sphere of the city.

De Lauretis, Teresa. Technologies of Gender: Essays on Theory, Film, and Fiction. Indiana University Press, 1987.
Collection of articles on technology and film from a feminist perspective.

"Exploring Disability In Comic Strips, Cartoons and Graphic Novels," from Disability Studies Online Magazine
Brief review of disability in comics and graphic novels.

Fiedler, Leslie. Tyranny of the Normal: Essays On Bioethics, Theology, and Myth. Boston: David R. Godine, 1996.
-Freaks: Myths and Images of the Secret Self. New York: Doubleday, 1978.
Fiedler's discussion of freak bodies provided one of the first cultural studies texts on non-normative bodies in science fiction and comics, and Fiedler continues the discussion within the context of traditions of medical narratives and realism.

Flanagan, Mary, and Booth, Austin, eds. Reload: Rethinking Women + Cyberculture. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2002.
Feminist science fiction perspective on women and technology, including articles on many of the science fiction texts mentioned above.

Franklin, Bruce. Future Perfect: American Science Fiction of the Nineteenth Century, Revised Edition. (London: Oxford University Press, 1978).
Examines nineteenth-century science fiction by such writers as Hawthorne and Poe; many of the stories discussed are concerned with the intersection of technology and non-normative bodies.

Garber, Marjorie, and Vickejs, Nancy J. The Medusa Reader. (New York: Routledge, 2003).
Collection of mythological and modern works which explore the image of the medusa as both beautiful woman and monster; emphasis on psychoanalysis, feminist, and postmodern perspectives of the female body.

Garland Thomson, Rosemary, ed. Freakery: Cultural Spectacles of the Extraordinary Body. New York: New York UP, 1996.
One of the classic disacultural studies texts on the "freak" or non-normative disabled body.

"The Geek Syndrome" Wired
Article discusses the link between Aspergers Syndrome and "geek" culture, an ongoing discussion within science fiction studies and culture.
Also refer to science fiction writer Gary Westfahl's article "Homo aspergerus" on the Locus Web site

Goggin, Gerard, and Newell, Christopher. Digital Disability: The Social Construction of Disability in New Media. New York: Rowman and Littlefield Publishers, Inc. 2003.
Disability studies perspective on how technology is used as a form of social exclusion.

Goodall, Jane R. Performance and Evolution in the Age of Darwin, New York: Routledge, 2002.
A cultural studies perspective on the intertextuality of medical and textual images of disability and the non-normative body as framed by nineteenth-century discourse in both the sciences and public entertainments.

Grosz, Elizabeth. "Naked," from The Prosthetic Impulse: From a Posthuman Present to a Biocultural Future, Marguard Smith and Joanne Morra, eds. Cambridge: The MIT Press, 2005.
Grosz, Elizabeth. Architecture From the Outside. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2001.
Grosz, Elizabeth. "Intolerable Ambiguity: Freaks As/At the Limit," from Freakery: Cultural Spectacles of the Extraordinary Body, Rosemarie Garland Thomson, ed. New York: New York UP, 1996. pp. 55-68.
Grosz writes about culture, technology, and normativity from a queer studies and urban studies perspective.

Halberstam, Judith. Posthuman Bodies. Indiana University Press (December 1, 1995).
Collection of articles on non-normative bodies and technology from a queer studies perspective.

Hansen, Mark B.N. Embodying Technesis : Technology beyond Writing (Studies in Literature and Science). University of Michigan Press (October 9, 2000).
Explores conflicting and complementary ways in which writers in science and humanities frame metaphors of technology.

Haraway, Donna. "Situated Knowledges" from The Reproductive Technologies Web: RT21 (course Web site) (course Web site), Harvard University.
Excerpt in which Haraway discusses subjectivity, knowledge, and the ways in which such science fiction texts as Varley's "The Persistence of Vision" problematize assumptions regarding the validity of knowledge.

Hayles, N. Katherine. How We Became Posthuman: Virtual Bodies in Cybernetics, Literature, and Informatics.
For an excerpt from Hayles's book, refer to her Web site "Liberal Subjectivity Imperiled: Norbert Wiener and Cybernetic Anxiety," excerpt

Jenkins, Henry. Textual Poachers. New York: Routledge, Chapman and Hall, Inc., 1992.
Explores stereotypes of science fiction fans as non-normative and the ways in which fans use science fiction media to express creativity and identity.

Keith, Lois. Take Up Thy Bed & Walk: Death, Disability, and Cure in Classic Fiction for Girls. New York: Routledge, 2001.
Just one of many articles which explores images of disability in children's and young adult literture; refer to The Lion and the Unicorn journal for many more.

Kevles, Daniel J. In the Name of Eugenics: Genetics and the Uses of Human Heredity. (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1985).
Discussion of eugenics and genomics, the economic and philosophical implications of genetic engineering.

Kittler, Friedrich. Gramophone, Film, Typewriter. Stanford University Press, 1999
Kittler, a German scholar of nineteenth and early twentieth-century media technology, uncovers a number of links between disability and technology.

Klatt's History of Speech Synthesis Department of Speech & Hearing Sciences, Speech Acoustics Laboratory, University of Arizona,
Interesting not only from a technology studies perspective but as part of a larger discussion of computer voices in both the movies and everyday use.
Database include sound clips

Kramer, Elizabeth P., and Gilson, Stephen F. "Queers and Crips: Parallel Identity Development Processes for Persons with Nonvisible Disabilities and Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Persons" Journal of Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Identity, Vol. 4, No. 1, 1999.
Explores intersections of crip and queer identity.

Lang, Harry. G. Silence of the Spheres: The Deaf Experience in the History of Science. Harry G. Lang, 1994.
Lang, Professor of Educational Research and Development at the National Technical Institute for the Deaf, Rochester Institute of Technology, discusses many deaf and hearing-impaired scientists, including two Nobel Laureates.

Levy, Michael. "Lois McMaster Bujold: Science Fiction and Disability." Kaleidoscope, The International Magazine of Literature, Fine Arts and Disability, January 1997.

Linton, Simi. Claiming Disability: Knowledge and Identity. New York University Press, 1998.
One of the definitive disability studies text examining disability and society. Includes discussion of the medical model of disability, the social construction of disability, and the concept of "passing" and "self-identifying."

Longmore, Paul K. "Screening Stereotypes: Images of Disabled People" from Screening Disability: Essays On Cinema and Disability. Lanham, MD University Press of America, 2001. pp. 1-17
A classic disability studies essay on images of people with disabilities in film.

Mitchell, David T., and Snyder Sharon L. Narrative Prosthesis: Disability and the Dependency of Discourse. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2000.

New York University School of Medicine Medical Humanities Database
Database providing annotations on texts and visual works which offer images of disability, illness, and aging, in order to provide a historical and cultural perspective on medical practices.

Norton, Martin F. The cinema of isolation : a history of physical disability in the movies. New Brunswick, N.J. : Rutgers University Press, c1994.
Extensive examination of various stereotypes of people with disabilities in film, from Charlie Chaplin's "City Lights" to Lon Chaney, Jr., monsters and the continuing popularity of movies about disabled war veterans.

Ott, Katherine, Serlin, David, and Mihn, Stephen, eds. Artificial Parts, Practical Lives: Modern Histories of Prosthetics. New York New York University Press, 2002.
This collection of articles provides a historical look at the science and social attitudes toward prosthetics, from Ben Franklin's writing on prosthetic devices to the new inexpensive prosthetics being developed for landmine explosion victims.

Porush, David. The Soft Machine: Cybernetic Fiction. (New York Methuen, 1985).
Interdisciplinary discussion of cybernetics and AI as metaphors in postmodern literature with an equal emphasis on both literature and science.

Purinton, Marjorie. "Byron's Disability and the Techno-Gothic Grotesque in The Deformed Transformed" from Byron and Disability: special issue of European Romantic Review, 12.3, summer 2001.
Exploration of the "techno-gothic," Both gothic and science were discursive fields upon which anxieties about social identity and physicality could be displaced, and the gothic conventions of drama were particularly convenient for playwrights' use in negotiating the influences of science upon culture.

Reeves, Byron, and Nass, Clifford. The Media Equation: How People Treat Computers, Television, and New Media Like Real People and Places. Stanford: Cambridge UP, 1996.
A discussion of cultural attitudes regarding how media and technology are ascribed with human attributes.

Sacks, Oliver. An Anthropologist on Mars: Seven Paradoxical Tales (New York: Alfred A Knopf, 1995).
Sacks, Oliver. "Preface" and "To See and Not See," in An Anthropologist on Mars (New York: Random House, 1995), xv-xx, 108-152.
"The Mind's Eye: What the Blind See." The New Yorker, July 28, 2003, p. 48.
Sacks remains one of the most popular writers about disability, influencing the way disability is conceptualized in the popular imagination. At the same time, he is often challenged by disability advocates as someone who has founded his career upon discussing people with disabilities and framing them as "alien," as suggested by his book title An Anthropologist from Mars.

Sconce, Jeffrey. Haunted Media: Electronic Presence from Telegraphy to Television. Duke UP, 2000.
Sconce offers a historical perspective of media technology and how it has forced people to reconsider definitions of embodiment, space, and time, while also providing new metaphors for consciousness and identity.

Siebers, Tobin. Lecture Topics in Disability Studies-Winter 2005, February 11, 2005.
audio lecture on disability and built environments Siebers contextualizes how normative bodies are framed by the structures they inhabit, with implications for both real and virtual environments.

Snyder, Sharon L. 1963- "Re-engaging the Body: Disability Studies and the Resistance to Embodiment" Public Culture - Volume 13, Number 3, Fall 2001, pp. 367-389

Sobchack, Vivian. "A Leg to Stand On: Prosthetics, Metaphor, and Materiality, from The Prosthetic Impulse From A Posthuman Present to A Biocultural Future, Marquard Smith and Joanne Morra, eds. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2006.
A classic esay in which cultural studies scholar Sobchack writes about her own prosthetic leg and the prosthetics of others, and how their prosthetics intersect with identity, technology, and art.
-Screening Space: The American Science Fiction Film (Second edition). New Brunswick: Rutgers UP, 2001.
Sobchack discusses the role of technology in society through an examination of its "liturgical" aspect in film, that is, as a public ritual which reaffirms certain social attitudes.

Sontag, Susan. "Illness as Metaphor & AIDS and Its Metaphors." Picador, 2001.
Sontag discusses her experience as a cancer patient and her struggle to maintain her sense of identity as something other than a patient or an object of pity. Her later work on AIDS goes further in exploring illness as metaphor.

Stone, Alaquere Roseanne. The War of Desire and Technology at the Close of the Mechanical Age. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2001.
Discussion of technology as prosthetic within the context of queer bodies.

Turkel, Sherry. The Inner History of Devices. MIT Press 2007.
Collection of essays by various individuals which explore intersections of technology and identity.
Read more about the book and the editor at Web site

"US Census Bureau Data on Disability." 2000 U.S. Census.
Latest statistics regarding people with disabilities, including the fact that one out of five U.S. citizens lives with a disability which impacts quality of life on a daily basis.

Virilio, Paul; Julie Rose, translator. The Vision Machine. Bloomington: Indiana UP, 1994.
An interview with Virilio, translated by James Der Derian can be found online at (April 15, 2006).

Wood, Robin. Hollywood From Vietnam to Reagan.and Beyond (Revised Edition). New York: Columbia UP, 2003.
Wood contextualizes non-normativity within the genre of the American horror movie, but his comments on the gothic and the oppression of the traditional family and society offers a clear and concise text for exploring images of the other.

Youngquist, Paul. Romantic Monstrosities: Bodies In British Romanticism. Minneapolis: Minnesota UP, 2003.
A cultural studies perspective of British Romanticism and medical technology with a particular focus on Byron's disability.