I’ve had a great couple of days of writing, revisiting my rather scratchily put together bits and pieces of literature review. It all seemed to come together mentally and I’ve been able to write and edit and review like crazy! Still a long way to go mind you…. 🙂
A couple of books I’m reading at the moment are really helping. I’ve had “No Pity. People with Disabilities Forging a New Civil Rights Movement” by Joe Shapiro on my iPad for ages but only really got into reading it last night. What an inspiring and motivating book! The personal stories of people with disabilities fighting against discrimination really makes my blood boil, and I then start thinking about all the young children who are still not receiving adequate O&M services at a young age. Why? Many reasons – lack of qualified O&M Specialists in Australia is a big one. But there are also other professionals who don’t refer young children for O&M because they ‘don’t think the child is ready’. Grrrrr……the people in Joe Shapiro’s book were also told they ‘couldn’t’ do this and they’d ‘never’ do that because of their disability. Some went on to do amazing things and change the laws on disability discrimination, access to the environment and so on. Young children can learn to use the long cane safely and efficiently and the positive implications of doing so are starting to come through in my data analysis. All of which is inspiring me to keep on plugging away at it!
The other author I constantly come back to is Joseph Cutter. I’ve written about his fabulous book before. I just love his attitude toward the children we work with – how they teach us so much and it is only our limited expectations that hold them back. When I started to work with early education professionals who were passionate about O&M, my attitudes towards blindness changed. I stopped seeing blindness as a limitation, but rather saw the children I was working with as children who just learnt in a different way. Reading through and synthesizing the literature on O&M with children, it still astounds me how much emphasis is put on the teaching of the ‘correct’ technique of the cane, rather than seeing O&M as a holistic skill which will develop appropriately over time.
It is so exciting when you get into ‘the flow’ of writing – time flies and ideas come at you left and right. It’s also great to feel the passion of your topic resurfacing (as it’s quite hard to stay passionate and motivated the whole time you’re writing a thesis!) – you really feel like you might be able to change the world! Even if in just a little way 🙂