Disability.TV Podcast with Andrew Pulrang is a must hear
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Excitement is in the air and on the airwaves. Wait, are they still considered airwaves when you download a podcast? Either way, here’s one you must check out if you’re interested in media representation of disability: the Disability.TV podcast with Andrew Pulrang. It’s the newest addition to Andrew’s super prolific blog, at www.disabilitythinking.blogspot.com.
The premise is simple on the surface but so very complex the instant you start to get into it: is disability shown on TV often enough or well enough? When it is shown, are we stopping to really ask the tough questions about whether the portrayal is accurate, fair, appealing, valuable, or the opposite of any of those? Are the characters created by real disabled people? Are they played by real disabled people? (Just guess that the answer to questions #1, #3, and #4 is nearly always “no,” and you’ll be correct.)
Each full episode, Andrew tackles one TV show series to ask very thought-provoking questions about the portrayal and share his perspectives as a disabled person and avid media guy. There are mini-episodes as well where you can catch up on a summary of the full episodes as well as get some audience participation disability challenges. The podcast also introduced me to a website of super amazingness: TVTropes.org. It’s a comprehensive wiki explaining tropes, cliches, and stereotypes you can exploit when writing fiction. It also helps us, as TV viewers, better pick apart what we’re presented. You’ll be seeing a ton more on this blog related to the disability page on TVTropes.org. Thank you, Andrew.
[Image description: Disability.TV logo with the name and disabilitythinking.blogspot.com. Above the text is an old analog TV with dials. On the TV screen is a white background and four access icons in little squares, symbols for wheelchair access, vision access, deaf access, and hard-of-hearing access.]
Starting very soon, Andrew will have guest co-hosts to bring additional perspectives to the conversation, guests such as Maddy Ruvolo (Disabled Girls Talk podcast), Alice Wong (Disability Visibility Project), and me!
Visit the blog, subscribe through iTunes or Stitcher, and get ready.