So long as they grow out of it: comics, the discourse of developmental normalcy, and disability

J Med Humanit. 2008 Jun;29(2):71-88. doi: 10.1007/s10912-008-9057-1.


This essay draws on two emerging fields--the study of comics or graphic fiction, and disability studies--to demonstrate how graphic fictions articulate the embodied, ethical, and sociopolitical experiences of impairment and disability. Examining David B's Epileptic and Paul Karasik and Judy Karasik's The Ride Together, I argue that these graphic novels unsettle conventional notions of normalcy and disability. In so doing, they also challenge our assumed dimensions and possibilities of the comics genre and medium, demonstrating the great potential comics hold for disability studies.

MeSH terms

  • Cartoons as Topic / psychology*
  • Child
  • Developmental Disabilities / psychology*
  • Disabled Children
  • Health
  • Humans
  • Social Identification*
  • Social Values