I wrapped up another semester of graduate school last week at College of Charleston. I’m on my way to earning a Master of Arts in Communication and I have one year left before graduation. This semester was exciting and I want to share a little bit about how I combined my passion for disability advocacy with the coursework for the class.
The course that I completed was Classical Rhetoric where we studied the theories and ancient philosophies of Aristotle, Plato and Quintilian. Using modern examples of disability advocacy, I showed how ancient rhetoric and oratory can be used to educate the community on disability issues including inclusion in the workforce and accessible parking.
In one of my papers, I used the Photovoice project that I participated in a few years ago as a case study to describe disability advocacy in action. The Photovoice project allowed for members of the spinal cord injury to photograph barriers that impede our mobility including steps, buildings without ramps and sidewalks without curb cuts. We also took pictures of elevators, chair lifts and other facilitators we encounter on a daily basis.
Using Quintilian’s five offices of rhetoric, which include invention, arrangement, style and presentation, memory and delivery, it was a unique way to show how photography can be used as a tool to promote awareness of accessibility and equality. The pictures are worth a thousand words and allowed us to use our voices to be advocates for the disability community.
To read more about the Photovoice project, go to https://tuesdaytalkwithalex.wordpress.com/2012/01/10/a-picture-is-worth-a-thousand-words/?preview=true&preview_id=58&preview_nonce=fd8e532007.