The guide was created by Alice Shepherd, the 2022-23 History Faculty Library Graduate trainee, as part of her year-long project and was launched at a research seminar, convened at the Oxford Centre for the History of Science, Medicine and Technology (OCHSMT) on Monday 27 November 2023.
Who is the guide for?
It is intended for researchers and students who are studying Disability History and other information professionals supporting researchers. It is also useful for practitioners and members of the public with an interest in (or who have a disability) and wish to gain a historical perspective.
The LibGuide consists of a collection of research resources crowdsourced during a Hackathon by 24 volunteers in Dec 2022 who scoured the internet for relevant archives, journals and various other useful websites. Over 200 nominated resources were then assessed and organised by Alice to make them as discoverable as possible. The guide conforms with accessibility standards.
The selected resources cover a great variety of topics across different historical periods (ancient to contemporary history).
The disabilities covered are wide ranging and include, for instance, autism, birth defects, chronic pain, hearing loss /deafness, learning disabilities, mental illness, mobility disabilities, visual impairment, and more.
Resources were also selected for aspects of disability relating to education, employment, medical technologies, stigma and war. The materials themselves may be archives, audio-visual, biographies, books, journals, legislation, newspapers, theses and websites.
The guide also lists Oxford historians researching aspects of disability history.
Feedback & suggestions
The guide will continue to evolve. It is currently limited largely to English language resources focused on western history and we hope there will be opportunities to expand its scope in the future.
We very much welcome feedback and, continuing in the crowdsourcing spirit, invite suggestions for additional resources for the LibGuide which can be made via our Recommend a Resource form.
Many congratulations and thanks go to Alice for her terrific work. We believe that this guide will be an excellent resource to help with the discovery of resources for disability history. Thanks of course also go to the volunteer ‘hackers’, without whom this guide would not exist, and the History Faculty for hosting and funding the hackathon in 2022.
Isabel Holowaty, Deputy Head of Humanities Libraries & History Librarian (Research), Bodleian Libraries, Oxford University
Dr Sloan Mahone, History Faculty, Oxford University
While you are here… we have many other guides for history resources. Check them out!