Creating the Back Ward: The Triumph of Custodialism and the Uses of Therapeutic Failure in Nineteenth Century Idiot Asylums
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"My focus in this chapter is on the origin of the back ward rather than its demise. Where did the “back wards” that [Burton] Blatt and [Senator Robert] Kennedy witnessed come from in the first place? What 3 exactly were those “antecedents of the problems observed” that Blatt cited? This chapter reviews that history and argues that, in fact, there is a specific narrative to the evolution of the institutional “back ward” as an identifiable place where people with the most significant intellectual disabilities were to be incarcerated and largely forgotten."
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Disability and Equity in Education | Inequality and Stratification | Other Sociology | Social History | United States History
Ferguson, P. M. (2014). Creating the back ward: The triumph of custodialism and the uses of therapeutic failure in 19th century idiot asylums. In Ben-Moshe, L., Carey, A., & Chapman, C. (Eds.), Disability incarcerated: Imprisonment and disability in the United States and Canada (pp. 45-62). New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
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This is an Accepted Manuscript of a book chapter published in Disability Incarcerated: Imprisonment and Disability in the United States and Canada, edited by Liat Ben-Moshe, Allison C. Carey, and Chris Chapman, in 2014. Some changes may have occurred between this version and the final publication.