Don't Call Me Inspirational: A Disabled Feminist Talks Back

Don't Call Me Inspirational: A Disabled Feminist Talks Back

 For psychotherapist, painter, feminist, filmmaker, writer, and disability activist Harilyn Rousso, hearing well-intentioned people tell her, "You're so inspirational!" is patronizing, not complimentary.

In her empowering and at times confrontational memoir, Don't Call Me Inspirational, Rousso, who has cerebral palsy, describes overcoming the prejudice against disability--not overcoming disability. She addresses the often absurd and ignorant attitudes of strangers, friends, and family. 

Rousso also examines her own prejudice toward her disabled body, and portrays the healing effects of intimacy and creativity, as well as her involvement with the disability rights community. She intimately reveals herself with honesty and humor and measures her personal growth as she goes from "passing" to embracing and claiming her disability as a source of pride, positive identity, and rebellion. 

A collage of images about her life, rather than a formal portrait, Don't Call Me Inspirational celebrates Rousso's wise, witty, productive, outrageous life, disability and all.


Title:Don't Call Me Inspirational: A Disabled Feminist Talks Back
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9781439909362
Format Type:

    Don't Call Me Inspirational: A Disabled Feminist Talks Back Reviews

  • Heidi Wangelin

    I just met Harilyn herself last night and I loved her stories about her life. I'm disabled like Harilyn and part of the Disability Studies program at UW. I love prose poetry and feminist intersection....

  • Barbara Linn

    Don't Call Me Inspirational: A Disabled Feminist Talks Back Don't Call Me Inspirational: A Disabled Feminist Talks Back (Paperback)by Harilyn Rousso After reading this book, I have been unstuck. I wil...

  • Colin

    I'm glad this book is out there. I appreciated Rousso's rather unflinching self-exploration--she does not shy away from the fact that she still struggles with self-loathing, even after decades in the ...

  • Kate

    The title of this book was a very attractive one; a sentiment I strongly share. The author is a writer, psychotherapist, artist, disability activist, and oh, yes, has severe cerebral palsy. The book i...

  • Tori

    Wonderful, unusual, memoir....

  • Mindy

    Frankly, I skimmed some of this book, so I could finish it before it was due back at the library. Parts of it really spoke to me while other parts had me considering not finishing it. I appreciated th...

  • Mo

    3.5 stars...

  • Thomson Jaffe

    Really interesting and enlightening but just not written in a style that enjoyed. I'm glad I read it because it was eye opening but I wouldn't rush to read anything else by her....

  • Anna

    More of an autobiography than a work of theory, but still pretty interesting. I found some of the emphasis on the so-called "importance" of more traditional markers of independence for WWDs (such as l...

  • Monster

    Good if you're new to the concept of ableism. Rousso is obviously of a different era of disability activism, but that makes her narrative relevant to earlier models of understanding and addressing dis...