Image by Succo from Pixabay

Every day we are confronted with stories of discrimination, oppression, prejudice and even hatred, directed at certain groups of people. In a society like the UK, this might include people of colour, sexual and gender minorities (LGBTQ), people with disabilities, immigrants, Jews, Muslims. The list goes on. As Fakhry Davids, a London psychoanalyst states in the opening line of his book, Internal Racism: A Psychoanalytic Approach to Race and Difference (2011), “to be black in a white world is an agony” (p.1). …


A graffiti depicting a man and a women, both wheel chair users, about to kiss
A graffiti depicting a man and a women, both wheel chair users, about to kiss

(Image by Funemanka from Pixabay)

When society marvels at the achievements of people with disabilities, we readily hear people comment on “what an inspiration” it is to see someone overcome difficult barriers to success. Take, for example, the Paralympians. We celebrate the power and triumph of the athletes. The “superhumans” as they may be called in the popular media. (I use “we” here to refer generally to non-disabled people).

In social media, films and advertisements we are invited to marvel at the achievements, against all odds, of people with disabilities. How amazing that they can do what they do, when…

Dr Poul Rohleder

Dr Poul Rohleder is a psychoanalytic psychotherapist and clinical psychologist. He is a social scientist, a writer and researcher on sexuality and mental health

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