Jess Waggoner

Dr. Waggoner is an Assistant Professor in Gender and Women’s Studies. Her research and teaching interests span U.S. literature and culture, feminist disability studies, queer and trans studies, health activisms, and African American studies. Their first book project explores the relationship between Black American cultural production and early disability social movements. This project proposes that current scholarship overlooks early disability activism and culture, especially by and about disabled Black Americans. In tracking this emergent politicization, this project demonstrates that disability became a form of solidarity through collective defiance of medical, legal, and social pathologizing discourses. Spanning protests of eugenics and medical segregation, Black women’s anti-psychiatric and anti-carceral literatures, and Ebony magazine’s coverage of access technologies, this project disrupts the historical centering of white disabled male narratives.