The DSQ-r is a crowdsourced, collaborative project of our community. This issue marks the second annual DSQ-r, an entire issue devoted to recently published books (and a few films) in our growing, diverse, interdisciplinary field. We dreamt up the DSQ-r issue in 2018 with the goal of putting on full display the recent scholarship, life writing, film, and art that our field has launched.

This issue includes 81 reviews! We are proud to highlight the vast work of our field and excited at how the DSQ-r issue has already grown from 38 reviews last year to more than double that amount in 2021. We began the process with an open call in the summer of 2020 for newly published books and media and for individuals who would like to review this material. The response was gratifying and overwhelming (in the best way!). Our undergraduate editorial interns, Greta and Ashley, who you'll meet below, copyedited the reviews, which they calculated total an astounding 106,125 words.

DSQ Editorial Interns

In the past couple of years, DSQ has been enriched by the collegiality and work of several editorial interns through "the writing internship" at the University of Connecticut. This internship is a credit-bearing experience that places students in professional writing environments. We've worked with the following interns:

  • Spring 2019: Betty Noe
  • Spring 2020: Emma Corby
  • Fall 2020: Ashley Roy and Greta Schmitz
  • Spring 2021 (current): Jessica Gallagher

We aim to engage the interns in the full landscape and wide range of things that happen with an international open access journal like DSQ (a lot)! Depending upon the things in motion and forthcoming at DSQ during any semester of an intern's work—and the skills and interests of the interns themselves—we set them to various tasks. Most importantly: they join our two-hour long weekly DSQ Editorial Team meetings, watch us "do our thing," chime in, and ask questions. They also keep intern journals of their experience at DSQ.

In Fall 2020 there were two interns working with us —Ashley and Greta —so double the pleasure and double the fun! And although all of our work now took place via distance and Zoom calls, these two accomplished quite a lot. We asked them to turn some of their journaling into an editorial introduction for the very issue they had worked so hard on. Here is what they had to say:

To the DSQ Community,

Ashley and I have had the unique privilege of entering the disability studies field from the inside as editorial interns for DSQ for our Fall 2020 Semester at the University of Connecticut. We were plopped in the midst of DSQ's publication process, in which several DSQ issues are being worked on, all in different states of production. I first became acquainted with the community by freely browsing DSQ's past publications, finding many of my own personal interests intersecting with that of disability studies. As an "outsider" I've learned a great amount and brought a new perspective to the table. Some topics forced me to confront fundamental beliefs that I didn't know I even held but are often the "default" for able-bodied people. Similar to what Ashley explains in her letter, I was compelled for the first time in my life to challenge my total inaction and thoughtlessness towards combating ableism. As an English literature major, I so often get caught up in the structure and labels of literature and who functions as what that I lose the fact that not every element needs to fit into certain boxes or accomplish specific things. Travis Chi Wing Lau asks in his review of Heidi Logan's Sensational Deviance: Disability in Nineteenth-Century Sensation Fiction, "Do disabled figures have to be 'active' or self-determining in order to be valued as characters?" Disabled people can live extraordinary lives but can also lead exceptionally normal and regular lives, and any of those life paths are valid. Disabled people don't usually fit in society's box of "normal" and yet, they don't usually fit into society's ideas of "disabled" either. An individual's struggles are unique and should not be one's defining characteristic because, as Audre Lorde said, "We do not live single-issue lives".

Another key intern observation is that there is a huge disconnect between a person that has a disability and the (usually) non-disabled person that helps them. In terms of accessibility, it seems that the abled person often assumes the accommodation best suited for the disabled person without discussion. This is simply a backwards action to take. What good is someone advocating for the use of resources for a person if they fail to even consult the person on exactly what resources they would need? This problem encroaches not only basic access areas of life, like education, but also creative areas, like with art and entertainment. It would be more worthwhile and effective to simply give agency to the disabled person in question.

Ashley and I's two main jobs in our semester long internship work were to find reviewers to be assigned to submissions and to copyedit this review issue. In total, we copyedited 82 submissions, a total of 106,125 words and an average of 1,310 words per review. The copyediting procedure followed was to open the final author-submitted draft in Google Docs and track edits throughout, generally using a lighter editing hand and correcting any errors in citation style (both MLA and APA were used depending on the author's preference). Then, a copy of the document was created in which all edits were made and the cleaned-up piece was then ready for the author's final approval. Not only was this task fruitful in honing my copyediting skills, but it allowed me to closely read and learn greatly from the wonderful pieces in this year's review issue!

I have greatly enjoyed my time working with the DSQ community and am continually in awe of how big and accepting the community is. I thank you for the passion and heart that is so clearly woven into the writing of each submission.


Dear DSQ Community,

Before interning for Disability Studies Quarterly, I considered myself to be somewhat well informed about disability studies. As I read submissions and explored the journal, I uncovered my preconceived notions about disability. DSQ taught me how to analyze and challenge my complicity in perpetuating ableism. One cannot meaningfully engage with content unless they are willing to set aside their preconceptions and be open to new ideas. As Jessie Male mentions in her review of Disabled Among Arrival: Eugenics, Immigration and the Construction of Race and Disability, Dolmage's "work reveals stories that are sugarcoated or hidden away, and as a result many readers - myself included - must consider our roles as scholars and community members and contend with our own complicity." Although Male focuses on disabled immigrants, many stories from and about individuals with disabilities are overlooked. An ableist viewpoint is prioritized, ignoring the voices of people with disabilities.

One way I noticed ableism is through language. Two terms I reconsidered were autonomy and accommodations. Autonomy is usually applied to an individual. However, many individuals with disabilities rely on relationships with others. Autonomy should encompass the interactions between individuals and should not reject dependency. In terms of accommodations, it's important to consider that accommodations are placed on an individual or community with disabilities by someone without a disability. As my co-intern, Greta mentions in her letter here, "In terms of accessibility, it seems that the abled person often assumes the accommodation best suited for the disabled person without discussion." Accommodations do not get at the root of the issue—that the world is built for able-bodied individuals. Access considers the opinions of individuals with disabilities instead of helping them better navigate an ableist environment.

It is also important to consider intersectionality, as one's race, class, gender, and sexuality heavily impact one's experiences. For example, people of color with disabilities confront both ableism and racism. One can better visualize the multiple barriers an individual faces in their daily life by noting the intersections between disability and other identities. However, it is important to realize that just because someone belongs to a group it does not mean that the group's experiences are universal. Labels are socially constructed and do not reflect the complexity of one's lived experience. Everyone has unique individual experiences regardless of their social positions.

At DSQ, Greta and I's main tasks were finding reviewers and copyediting. Submissions must be reviewed in order to be published in the journal. The first step of finding reviewers is generating keywords from a submission's title. After creating keywords, there are three main ways to find reviewers: searching reviewer interests from the DSQ user database, searching the main DSQ website for recently published pieces, and looking at a published work's bibliography or works cited to find additional publications that relate to your keywords. The co-editors may also recommend a reviewer if she knows someone with similar interests. Greta and I found 4-8 reviewers for each submission and Brenda decided which reviewers to contact. We found reviewers for 78 articles, culminating in 491 potential reviewers overall. Since DSQ includes peer collaboration, it is useful to find multiple reviewers with slightly different reviewing interests to see how people with different backgrounds will approach the submission.

DSQ provides individuals with and without disabilities with new information about the field of disability studies, stories they may relate to, and the journal exposes them to new perspectives and ideas about how to advocate for change and inclusivity in their own communities. I am grateful to be a part of DSQ and I am emboldened by your stories, research, and writing.

Thank you, Ashley Roy

Power to the Peer Reviewers!

Our work at DSQ would not be possible without our dedicated peer reviewers, and to them, we are immensely grateful. The past year (2020) introduced unprecedented demands on the professional and personal lives of the DSQ community and the field of disability studies more broadly. We understand that peer reviewing is a kind of academic labor, that while vital and necessary for the growth of our field, is not work that affords much prestige or recognition. In a year when everyone had fewer "spoons" than usual, we appreciated our reviewers more than ever. Thank you for your academic generosity and dedication to DSQ and our authors. You make our world go round.

Elisa Abes, Tulasi Acharya, Julie Adamo, Shilpaa Anand, Reindolf Anokye, Susan Antebi, Amanda Apgar, James Austin, Claire Barber-Stetson, Angharad Beckett, Daryl J. Bem, Liat Ben-Moshe, Tammy Berberi, Tanmoy Bhattacharya, Arthur W. Blaser, Richard S. Boswell, Harold Braswell, Shannon Alyse Bridges, Bernadette Calafell, Kate Caldwell, Allison Carey, James Casey, Vandana Chaudhry, Julie Cosenza, Elizabeth DePoy, Thomas Dirth, Jane Dryden, Tracey Edelist, Cole Eskridge, Anelise Farris, Michael Feely, Jim Ferris, Zoe DuPree Fine, Anjali J. Forber-Pratt, Sonya Freeman Loftis, Michele Friedner, Kelly Fritsch, Elaine Gerber, Carol J. Gill, Lynn Gitlow, Gerard Goggin, Robert Gould, Elizabeth-Anne Graham, Jonathan Gray, John Wayne Gulledge, Melinda C. Hall, Tamar Heller, Miriam F. Hertz, Katharina Heyer, Huhana Hickey, Martha Stoddard Holmes, Alec Ry'n Hosterman, Michelle Jarman, Encarnacion Juarez-Almendros, Devva Kasnitz, Andjela Hariatma Kaur, Stefanie Kennedy, Stephanie L. Kerschbaum, Mary B. Killeen, Pamela J. Kincheloe, Georgina Kleege, Catherine Kudlick, Sarah Juliet Lauro, Jessica Nina Lester, Crystal Yin Lie, Winnie Looby, Andrew Lucchesi, Amy Lynn Button, Dean Manley, Donna Marie McNamara, Amber Joy Martin, Laura Mauldin, Anne McGuire, Claire McKinney, Robert McRuer, Raquel Medina, Nilika Mehrotra, Emily K. Michael, Laura Miller-Graff, Julie Minich, Susannah B. Mintz, Krista K. Miranda, Sheila Moeschen, Stuart Murray, Augustina Naami, Denise Nepveux, Catherine Sarah Nichols, Andrea Nicki, Meghann O'Leary, Mark Osteen, Noam Ostrander, Randall Owen, Ryan Parrey, Julie Passanante Elman, Abdallah Possi, Marcus Power, Margaret Price, Michael J. Prince, Katie Rose Guest Pryal, Darrell E. Purdy, Heather Rakes, Michael Ralph, Mohammed Abouelleil Rashed, Michael Rembis, Jaime Roman Brenes Reyes, Thomas Reynolds, Jesse Rice-Evans, Alexis Riley, Octavian Robinson, Shawna Rushford-Spence, Ellen Samuels, Ralph Savarese, Marsha Lee Saxton, Sami Schalk, Cory Schmid, Katherine Seelman, Siobhan Senier, Naomi Sheneman, Russell Shuttleworth, Angela Smith, Natalie Spagnuolo, John-Paul Spiro, Scott St. Pierre, Megan Ann Stanley, Angi Stone-MacDonald, Zosha Stuckey, Leslie Swartz, Louise Tam, Alex Tankard, James Tavares, Olga Tchepikova-Treon, David James Thomas, Pasquale Toscano, Shelley Tremain, James Trent, Emma Tumilty, Julie C. Van Dam, Pieter Verstraete, Amy Vidali, Fuson Wang, Nikki Wedgwood, Fiona Whittingtin-Walsh, Gregor Wolbring, Deanna Parvin Yadollahi

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Copyright (c) 2021 Brenda Brueggemann, Elizabeth Brewer, Kelsey Henry, Ashley Roy, Greta Schmitz

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Volume 1 through Volume 20, no. 3 of Disability Studies Quarterly is archived on the Knowledge Bank site; Volume 20, no. 4 through the present can be found on this site under Archives.

Beginning with Volume 36, Issue No. 4 (2016), Disability Studies Quarterly is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives license unless otherwise indicated. 

Disability Studies Quarterly is published by The Ohio State University Libraries in partnership with the Society for Disability Studies.

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