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Posts Tagged ‘down syndrome’

“Collaborative networked framework for the rehabilitation of children with Down’s Syndrome” (PDF) is an old paper from the University of Averio in Portugal, but the project described is really interesting. Presented at the third International Conference on Disability, Virtual Reality and Associated Technology in Alghero, Italy in 2000, the authors propose “a multi-user virtual communication platform that enables rehabilitation and social integration of Down’s Syndrome children.”

Using this platform, the kids engage in fantasy play and problem-solve with their avatars; the neat part is that they’re playing with other kids who have Down Syndrome from all over the world. So not only are kids learning independently in a virtual environment—”learn[ing] by themselves through experience without close adult mediation,” as the authors say—and not only are they collaborating with other people. They’re also working and playing with other people who have Down Syndrome. The framework brings people with disabilities together in ways that aren’t possible in real life because of geographic constraints. While there’s nothing wrong with being around one’s “typically developing peers,” it’s great when disabled people can form communities with other disabled people, too. And self-advocates do a lot of great work.

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Over on Feministe, Bint Bintalshamsa asks:

Can we stop with the news reports calling [Elizabeth Edwards's] cancer ‘terminal’? Please? Yes, she does have cancer, but it isn’t terminal. It’s incurable. There’s a helluva difference between the two.

Some commenters argued that calling Edwards’s cancer “terminal” was correct according to various legal and medical definitions. Which prompted Bint to ask this incredibly awesome question: “Why is it those who do not have the condition are considered the experts on how it should be viewed?”

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UPDATE: Dave Hingsburger discusses the “disabled people are defenseless” stereotype in his post DPN

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Friends Duane Graves and Rene Moreno make B movies. Duane writes and directs; Rene acts and does his own stunts. He also has Down Syndrome. In 2000 they made a documentary called Up Syndrome. There’s an abriged version on YouTube:

Part 1

Part 2

Unfortunatley, there are very few subtitles, so it’s not very accessible to Deaf and hard of hearing viewers.

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