Activists in Reykjavik launch the new Around the Toilet film

Around the Toilet has gone through several phases to date. One of its current aims is to take our conversations of toilets, disability, gender and access to grassroots disability and queer arts and activist spaces internationally. This is particularly exciting as it means touring our new animation, The Toilet, to different spaces, including film festivals and activist groups. Last week, the tour began as Gemma Nash (disabled artist, and Community Co-I on the project) and I travelled to Reykjavik, Iceland for our animation’s WORLD PREMIERE. This blog post summarises the event.

We were hosted by three organisations: Tabú (a disabled women’s activist organisation), Trans Ísland (a trans people’s advocacy and activist organisation) and Samtökin ’78 (Iceland’s national queer organisation). The event itself took place in the building of Samtökin ’78 – and we were excited on arrival by the rainbow unicorn greeting us on the wall!

IMG-3092

Gemma and Jen stand under the ‘rainbow unicorn’ before the event.

I spoke first about the origins of the project. I drew on Alison Kafer’s book, Feminist Queer Crip, to talk about the (not always easy!) relationships between queer, feminist and disability movements. Kafer uses the toilet as an example of space that it sometimes contested between (and indeed, within) these movements.

For example, some trans and other gender non-conforming people have and continue to fight for a greater provision of gender neutral toilets. Although we often don’t think of it as such, the most frequently available gender neutral toilet space is the ‘accessible’ or the ‘disabled’ toilet. In 1998 Sally Munt, discussing her experiences as a butch lesbian, named the ‘disabled toilet’ a ‘queer space’ – “‘a stress-free location […] in which I can momentarily procure an interval from the gendered public environment, and physically replenish”.

Some disabled people, however, have argued that disabled people should have access to binary gendered (men’s/women’s) toilets. They say that gender neutral accessible toilets contribute to the positioning of disabled people as a ‘third gender’. Furthermore, disabled woman scholar and activist, Kay Inckle critiques Munt for “co-opting limited accessible facilities”, or, in other words, using toilets which weren’t made for her. Inckle argues that although gender neutral toilets may be considered progressive by some people, “for many disabled women, to be considered female and/or as sexual at all would be a major stepping-stone on the rocky and inaccessible road to human status”.

IMG-3094

Jen presenting on the origins of the Around the Toilet project

Despite critiques such as Inckle’s, it’s important to note that many disabled people (trans and cis) want to retain the gender neutral space of the accessible toilet. There are many reasons for this, including having a personal assistant of a different gender. Indeed, in the talk, I discussed how the workshops that we’ve held with trans, queer and disabled people have provoked a range of emotions and responses. Many non-disabled trans people have spoken to us about feeling guilty if they use the ‘accessible’/’disabled’ toilet, despite being scared to use the binary gender men’s and women’s bathrooms. Furthermore, some trans and disabled participants said we should use labels for toilets which tell us what is in them, rather than who should be allowed to use them.

In her talk which followed, Gemma highlighted how disagreements about toilet space don’t just occur between different movements and groups of people, but also within them. Gemma discussed her experiences as a disabled mother. She talked about how some disabled people actively campaign for the removal of baby changing tables from the ‘accessible’ (or ‘disabled’) toilet. Their argument is that as changing a baby can take a long time, it prevents disabled people using the toilet. Some people also say that it infantilises disabled people (positions them similarly to babies). However, Gemma told us the importance of having accessible baby changing facilities. When her daughter was a baby, having the baby changing in the accessible toilet was the only way that she could comfortably change her child, whilst also using the toilet herself. She said that most people don’t consider that disabled people may too be parents.

The themes above are a snapshot of some of the difficult, and often painful, barriers to access that are covered in our new film, The Toilet. The film illustrates how inaccessible or unsafe toilets affect people in a range of ways, stopping some from leaving the house, and leading others to lose their jobs, or avoid food and drink, and taking day trips and holidays. Through the stories of trans, Muslim and disabled people, we show how current toilet provisions prioritise some people’s needs at the expense of others.

Toilet access is an important social and political issue and we need to fight for change.


Thank you SO much to Tabú, Trans Ísland and Samtökin ’78 for hosting this event and to those who attended for the fascinating discussion. Keep an eye on our blog for an updated list of where you can see screenings of, The Toilet. We’ll also be announcing them on Twitter (@cctoilettalk). The Toilet will also be available online to be used by groups and organisations in early 2018 (watch this space!).

Advertisements

Two papers on School Toilets now open access #cctoilettalk

The two papers that I have written with Charlotte Jones and Lisa Procter have now been made open access. Click on the titles below to reach the full articles. You can also get to these through the journal articles page on this blog.

In other exciting news, some of the Around the Toilet team met with Purple Patch Arts yesterday to plan our school toilets workshops with disabled children and young people. Keep up to date with our work on school toilets via the Around the Toilet blog.

School Toilets: Queer, Disabled Bodies and Gendered Lessons of Embodiment

In this paper we argue that school toilets function as one civilising site [Elias, 1978. The Civilising Process. Oxford: Blackwell] in which children learn that disabled and queer bodies are out of place. This paper is the first to offer queer and crip perspectives on school toilets. The small body of existing school toilet literature generally works from a normative position which implicitly perpetuates dominant and oppressive ideals. We draw on data from Around the Toilet, a collaborative research project with queer, trans and disabled people (aroundthetoilet.wordpress.com) to critically interrogate this work. In doing this we consider ‘toilet training’ as a form of ‘civilisation’, that teaches lessons around identity, embodiment and ab/normal ways of being in the world. Furthermore, we show that ‘toilet training’ continues into adulthood, albeit in ways that are less easily identifiable than in the early years. We therefore call for a more critical, inclusive, and transformative approach to school toilet research.

Troubling school toilets: resisting discourses of ‘development’ through a critical disability studies and critical psychology lens

This paper interrogates how school toilets and ‘school readiness’ are used to assess children against developmental milestones. Such developmental norms both inform school toilet design and practice, and perpetuate normative discourses of childhood as middle-class, white, ‘able’, heteronormative, cissexist and inferior to adulthood. Critical psychology and critical disability studies frame our analysis of conversations from online practitioner forums. We show that school toilets and the norms and ideals of ‘toilet training’ act as one device for Othering those who do not fit into normative Western discourses of ‘childhood’. Furthermore, these idealised discourses of ‘childhood’ reify classed, racialised, gendered and dis/ablist binaries of good/bad parenting. We conclude by suggesting new methodological approaches to school toilet research which resist perpetuating developmental assumptions and prescriptions. In doing this, the paper is the first to explicitly bring school toilet research into the realms of critical psychology and critical disability studies.

CfP extended deadline: The Crip, the Fat and the Ugly in an Age of Austerity: Resistance, Reclamation, and Affirmation (extended deadline)

We have extended the deadline to submit to our special issue of the Review of Disability Studies, The Crip, the Fat and the Ugly in an Age of Austerity: Resistance, Reclamation, and Affirmation.

The new deadline is 17th July 2017.

The Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal (RDS) seeks proposals for a special forum on the Crip, the fat, the ugly. We are currently soliciting papers of up to 7500 words in length, including references and tables. The deadline for submission of papers is July 17, 2017. Papers should be submitted to the Special Guest Editors Dr. Jen Slater, Sheffield Hallam University j.slater@shu.ac.uk, and Dr. Kirsty Liddiard, University of Sheffield k.liddiard@sheffield.ac.uk . Upon submission, please indicate that your paper is for consideration of the special forum on the Crip, the fat, and the ugly in an age of austerity.

Papers considered for inclusion may take the form of academic and creative works, as well as reflections on international disability-specific policies, practices, pedagogies and developments.

Submissions to this special issue will undergo a process of multiple editors peer-review. Authors will be notified of whether their papers will be included in the forum by September 1, 2017. Accepted authors will then be asked to submit their papers online to RDS. Prospective authors are encouraged to consult the RDS website at www.rds.hawaii.edu for more information about the Journal and its formatting guidelines. Authors are encouraged to review previous issues of RDS in preparing their paper and to subscribe to the Journal. All submissions must follow the RDS publication guidelines posted on the website. Please note that acceptance of an article does not guarantee publication in RDS.

‘The magnificence of a body that shakes, spills out, takes up space, needs help, moseys, slinks, limps, drools, rocks, curls over on itself. The magnificence of a body that doesn’t get to choose when to go to the bathroom, let alone which bathroom to use.  A body that doesn’t get to choose what to wear in the morning, what hairstyle to sport, how they’re going to move or stand, or what time they’re going to bed.  The magnificence of bodies that have been coded, not just undesirable and ugly, but un-human.  The magnificence of bodies that are understanding gender in far more complex ways than I could explain in an hour. Moving beyond a politic of desirability to loving the ugly.  Respecting Ugly for how it has shaped us and been exiled. Seeing its power and magic, seeing the reasons it has been feared. Seeing it for what it is: some of our greatest strength’. (Mingus, 2011)

Global austerity has a far reach, often into, around, behind, beyond and alongside the body. Global austerity routinely categorises bodies in terms of productivity, value, cost, ability and aesthetics. The body is positioned vis-a-vis global austerity as a site for social order, economic possibility, progression, and big business. Whereas “[a]n able body is the body of a citizen; deformed deafened, amputated, obese, female, perverse, crippled, maimed and blinded bodies do not make up the body politic” (Davis, 1995, pp. 71-72).

Through global austerity, then, the crip, the fat and the ugly are typically Othered and denigrated bodies, identities, minds and selves, implicated and co-constituted by one-another (Bergman, 2009; Kafer, 2013). Within a context of coloniality, transnational capitalism, patriarchy, cissexism and white supremacy, the Crip, the fat and the ugly are

rendered unintelligible (Butler, 1999), made in/visible and vilified locally, nationally, and globally. As Garland-Thompson (2002, p. 57) reminds us, “as a culture we are at once obsessed with and intensely conflicted about the disabled body. We fear, deify, disavow, avoid, abstract, revere, conceal, and reconstruct disability – perhaps because it is one of the most universal, fundamental of human experiences”.

Notwithstanding the harsh political backdrop, Clare (2015, p. 107) reminds us that “[w]ithout pride, individual and collective resistance to oppression becomes nearly impossible”. In this special issue we therefore seek to explore affirmatory meanings and pleasurable engagements with the Crip, the fat and the ugly. By this we mean to critically resist and play with normative understandings of what bodies should do and be, to reimagine that – as Mingus (2011) emphasises – the Crip, the fat and the ugly are ‘our greatest strength’. How are Crip, fat and ugly embodiments both resisting and resistant? How might they offer new ways of interrogating global austerity and neoliberal ways of life? How might the Crip, the fat, and the ugly generate new, diverse and polymorphous pleasures? What are the relationships, entanglements and connections between the austere and the aesthetic? What communities do the Crip, the fat, and the ugly build and how are these critical for survival, love and life?

Submissions to this journal could include, but are not limited to, critical interrogations of the relationship between the crip, the fat and the ugly, with:

  • Aesthetic labour

  • Activism and resistance

  • Beauty industries and economies

  • Biopolitics and biopedagogies

  • Bodily esteem, confidence, self-worth and self-love

  • Colonisation and first nations communities

  • Emotion and affect

  • Extensions of Mia Mingus’ work on ugliness

  • Globalisation and globality

  • Health and Healthisation

  • Identity, imagery and representation: masculinities, femininities, queer trans and intersex identities

  • Impairment and embodiment

  • Industrial complexes, institutions and systems

  • Madness and Mad politics

  • Other forms of privilege and oppression (class, ‘race’, gender, sexuality, age etc.)

  • Popular culture and The Arts

  • Queer bodies, identities and selves

  • The politics of staring (Garland-Thomson, 2009)

  • The sexual body: Pleasure, sensuality and desire

RDS is a peer-reviewed, multidisciplinary, international journal published by the Center on Disability Studies at the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa.The Journal contains research articles, essays, creative works and multimedia relating to the culture of disability and people with disabilities.

New Paper: Troubling school toilets: resisting discourses of ‘development’ through a critical disability studies and critical psychology lens

It’s been great to work with Charlotte Jones and Lisa Procter on the second of our school toilet papers, which was published last week in the journal, Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education. The paper is called Troubling school toilets: resisting discourses of ‘development’ through a critical disability studies and critical psychology lens and I’ve copied the abstract below. I’m working on getting an open access version of this paper online, but for now the link above takes you to the published version, and contact me if you want a free author copy.

Abstract

This paper interrogates how school toilets and ‘school readiness’ are used to assess children against developmental milestones. Such developmental norms both inform school toilet design and practice, and perpetuate normative discourses of childhood as middle-class, white, ‘able’, heteronormative, cissexist and inferior to adulthood. Critical psychology and critical disability studies frame our analysis of conversations from online practitioner forums. We show that school toilets and the norms and ideals of ‘toilet training’ act as one device for Othering those who do not fit into normative Western discourses of ‘childhood’. Furthermore, these idealised discourses of ‘childhood’ reify classed, racialised, gendered and dis/ablist binaries of good/bad parenting. We conclude by suggesting new methodological approaches to school toilet research which resist perpetuating developmental assumptions and prescriptions. In doing this, the paper is the first to explicitly bring school toilet research into the realms of critical psychology and critical disability studies.

New paper: ‘Like, pissing yourself is not a particularly attractive quality, let’s be honest’: Learning to contain through youth, adulthood, disability and sexuality

I’m really pleased to say that I have a new article published with my colleague, Kirsty Liddiard in a fabulous special issue of Sexualities, Disability and Sexuality: Desires and Pleasures. The article is called ‘Like, pissing yourself is not a particularly attractive quality, let’s be honest’: Learning to contain through youth, adulthood, disability and sexuality and the link to journal’s version of the full article is here – but there is also an open access version. I have copied and pasted the abstract below:

In this article, the authors (re)conceptualize containment in the context of youth, gender, disability, crip sex/uality and pleasure. The article begins by exploring eugenic histories of containment and traces the ways in which the anomalous embodiment of disabled people remains vigorously policed within current neo-eugenic discourse. Drawing upon data from two corresponding research studies, the authors bring the lived experiences of disabled young people to the fore. They explore their stories of performing, enacting and realizing containment: containing the posited unruliness of the leaky impaired body; containment as a form of (gendered) labour; and containment as a marker of normalization and sexualization, and thus a necessary component for ableist adulthood. Thus, they theorize crip embodiment as permeable, porous and problematic in the context of the impossibly bound compulsory (sexually) able adult body. The authors suggest that the implicit learning of containment is therefore required of disabled young people, particularly women, to counter infantilizing and desexualizing discourse, cross the ‘border zone of youth’ and achieve normative neoliberal adulthood. Crucially, however, the article examines the meaning of what the authors argue are important moments of messiness: the precarious localities of leakage that disrupt containment and thus the ‘reality’ of the ‘able’, ‘adult’ body. The article concludes by considering the ways in which these bodily ways of being contour both material experiences of pleasure and the right(s) to obtain it.

Call for Papers: The Crip, the Fat and the Ugly in an Age of Austerity: Resistance, Reclamation, and Affirmation

I’m really excited to be editing a special issue of the Review of Disability Studies with my mate and colleague, Kirsty Liddiard. The special issue is called, The Crip, the Fat and the Ugly in an Age of Austerity: Resistance, Reclamation, and Affirmation.

I’ve copied and pasted the full call for papers below, but you can also access it on the Review of Disability Studies website.

The Review of Disability Studies: An International Journal (RDS) seeks proposals for a special forum on the Crip, the fat, the ugly. We are currently soliciting papers of up to 7500 words in length, including references and tables. The deadline for submission of papers is June 1, 2017. Papers should be submitted to the Special Guest Editors Dr. Jen Slater, Sheffield Hallam University j.slater@shu.ac.uk, and Dr. Kirsty Liddiard, University of Sheffield k.liddiard@sheffield.ac.uk . Upon submission, please indicate that your paper is for consideration of the special forum on the Crip, the fat, and the ugly in an age of austerity.

Papers considered for inclusion may take the form of academic and creative works, as well as reflections on international disability-specific policies, practices, pedagogies and developments.

Submissions to this special issue will undergo a process of multiple editors peer-review. Authors will be notified of whether their papers will be included in the forum by September 1, 2017. Accepted authors will then be asked to submit their papers online to RDS. Prospective authors are encouraged to consult the RDS website at www.rds.hawaii.edu for more information about the Journal and its formatting guidelines. Authors are encouraged to review previous issues of RDS in preparing their paper and to subscribe to the Journal. All submissions must follow the RDS publication guidelines posted on the website. Please note that acceptance of an article does not guarantee publication in RDS.

‘The magnificence of a body that shakes, spills out, takes up space, needs help, moseys, slinks, limps, drools, rocks, curls over on itself. The magnificence of a body that doesn’t get to choose when to go to the bathroom, let alone which bathroom to use.  A body that doesn’t get to choose what to wear in the morning, what hairstyle to sport, how they’re going to move or stand, or what time they’re going to bed.  The magnificence of bodies that have been coded, not just undesirable and ugly, but un-human.  The magnificence of bodies that are understanding gender in far more complex ways than I could explain in an hour. Moving beyond a politic of desirability to loving the ugly.  Respecting Ugly for how it has shaped us and been exiled. Seeing its power and magic, seeing the reasons it has been feared. Seeing it for what it is: some of our greatest strength’. (Mingus, 2011)

Global austerity has a far reach, often into, around, behind, beyond and alongside the body. Global austerity routinely categorises bodies in terms of productivity, value, cost, ability and aesthetics. The body is positioned vis-a-vis global austerity as a site for social order, economic possibility, progression, and big business. Whereas “[a]n able body is the body of a citizen; deformed deafened, amputated, obese, female, perverse, crippled, maimed and blinded bodies do not make up the body politic” (Davis, 1995, pp. 71-72).

Through global austerity, then, the crip, the fat and the ugly are typically Othered and denigrated bodies, identities, minds and selves, implicated and co-constituted by one-another (Bergman, 2009; Kafer, 2013). Within a context of coloniality, transnational capitalism, patriarchy, cissexism and white supremacy, the Crip, the fat and the ugly are

rendered unintelligible (Butler, 1999), made in/visible and vilified locally, nationally, and globally. As Garland-Thompson (2002, p. 57) reminds us, “as a culture we are at once obsessed with and intensely conflicted about the disabled body. We fear, deify, disavow, avoid, abstract, revere, conceal, and reconstruct disability – perhaps because it is one of the most universal, fundamental of human experiences”.

Notwithstanding the harsh political backdrop, Clare (2015, p. 107) reminds us that “[w]ithout pride, individual and collective resistance to oppression becomes nearly impossible”. In this special issue we therefore seek to explore affirmatory meanings and pleasurable engagements with the Crip, the fat and the ugly. By this we mean to critically resist and play with normative understandings of what bodies should do and be, to reimagine that – as Mingus (2011) emphasises – the Crip, the fat and the ugly are ‘our greatest strength’. How are Crip, fat and ugly embodiments both resisting and resistant? How might they offer new ways of interrogating global austerity and neoliberal ways of life? How might the Crip, the fat, and the ugly generate new, diverse and polymorphous pleasures? What are the relationships, entanglements and connections between the austere and the aesthetic? What communities do the Crip, the fat, and the ugly build and how are these critical for survival, love and life?

Submissions to this journal could include, but are not limited to, critical interrogations of the relationship between the crip, the fat and the ugly, with:

  • Aesthetic labour

  • Activism and resistance

  • Beauty industries and economies

  • Biopolitics and biopedagogies

  • Bodily esteem, confidence, self-worth and self-love

  • Colonisation and first nations communities

  • Emotion and affect

  • Extensions of Mia Mingus’ work on ugliness

  • Globalisation and globality

  • Health and Healthisation

  • Identity, imagery and representation: masculinities, femininities, queer trans and intersex identities

  • Impairment and embodiment

  • Industrial complexes, institutions and systems

  • Madness and Mad politics

  • Other forms of privilege and oppression (class, ‘race’, gender, sexuality, age etc.)

  • Popular culture and The Arts

  • Queer bodies, identities and selves

  • The politics of staring (Garland-Thomson, 2009)

  • The sexual body: Pleasure, sensuality and desire

RDS is a peer-reviewed, multidisciplinary, international journal published by the Center on Disability Studies at the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa.The Journal contains research articles, essays, creative works and multimedia relating to the culture of disability and people with disabilities.

New Project Funding: Taking Around the Toilet to New Spaces

I’m very pleased to announce that, thanks for funding from the AHRC, a new strand of the Around the Toilet project is about to begin.

Over the last two years, we’ve been working with various communities – including trans, queer and disabled people – to explore the ways that toilets can exclude some, whilst including others. A lack of access to suitable toilets affects people’s lives in all kinds of ways; exclusion from toilets often connects to wider social and spatial exclusion and segregation, as well as personal discomfort. The New Spaces project will focus on impact and engagement activities to help us develop this research further. The project has three strands: 1) working with queer and disability arts organisations and events internationally; 2) sharing our Toilet Toolkit design solutions with trainee architects and design professionals; and 3) exploring toilets creatively with children and young people.

There is more information on the new project on the Around the Toilet blog, where we’ll also be posting regularly updates as the project progresses. You can also follow us on Twitter @cctoilettalk

More studentships available for PhD study looking critically at ‘vulnerability’ and bullying in the lives of disabled and/or LGBT* young people

I posted a few weeks ago about PhD studentships available to come and do a PhD around bullying and ‘vulnerability’in the lives of disabled and/or LGBT young people with El Formby, Karen Dunn and I (information of the project below). There is now more funding available meaning that if you missed the original deadline of February 1st, you now have until February 24th to apply. Get in touch with El or myself for more info.

Click here for full information from the Sheffield Hallam webpage (follow the link to ‘education’).

Contextualising bullying and ‘vulnerability’ in the lives of LGBT and/or disabled young people

Anti-bullying practice and advocacy often understands certain ‘types’ of young people, including lesbian, gay, bisexual or trans (LGBT) and disabled young people, as being ‘at risk’ or ‘vulnerable’ to bullying. At the same time, youth work provision and other support services are increasingly subject to ‘targeted’ (rather than universal) work. Such approaches essentialise and individualise ‘vulnerability’ as something ‘within’ a person, rather than a product of socio-cultural-political contexts. Combining our backgrounds in critical disability studies, critical psychology, and sociology, we are interested in proposals that examine and critique the notion of ‘vulnerability’, and how it is constructed and enacted in education and (youth) service provision. The suggested research approach is qualitative, within which artsbased and/or participatory methods could be adopted.

New Paper: School toilets: queer, disabled bodies and gendered lessons of embodiment

I’m really pleased that this new paper, School Toilets: queer, disabled bodies and gendered lessons of embodiment, written with Charlotte Jones and Lisa Procter, has been published online in the journal, Gender and Education.

Unfortunately, these is an embargo period before I am able to make it open access, but if you don’t have a subscription to the journal and want one of the free author copies then get in touch.

Abstract

In this paper we argue that school toilets function as one civilising site [Elias, 1978. The Civilising Process. Oxford: Blackwell] in which children learn that disabled and queer bodies are out of place. This paper is the first to offer queer and crip perspectives on school toilets. The small body of existing school toilet literature generally works from a normative position which implicitly perpetuates dominant and oppressive ideals. We draw on data from Around the Toilet, a collaborative research project with queer, trans and disabled people (aroundthetoilet.wordpress.com) to critically interrogate this work. In doing this we consider ‘toilet training’ as a form of ‘civilisation’, that teaches lessons around identity, embodiment and ab/normal ways of being in the world. Furthermore, we show that ‘toilet training’ continues into adulthood, albeit in ways that are less easily identifiable than in the early years. We therefore call for a more critical, inclusive, and transformative approach to school toilet research.

Funded PhD Opportunity: Contextualising bullying and ‘vulnerability’ in the lives of LGBT and/or disabled young people

Sheffield Hallam University is offering PhD funding. I am part of the supervisor team for the below project, along with El Formby and Karen Dunn. Feel free to get in touch with me or El (whose email address is on the linked document) for more information/a conversation before application. We have a vibrant Disability Studies PhD community and it would be great to keep it growing!

NB: the link to information regarding all studentships at Sheffield Hallam is here. Scroll down and click the link under the ‘SIOE’ heading to see all projects specific to ‘education’.

Contextualising bullying and ‘vulnerability’ in the lives of LGBT and/or disabled young people

Anti-bullying practice and advocacy often understands certain ‘types’ of young people, including lesbian, gay, bisexual or trans (LGBT) and disabled young people, as being ‘at risk’ or ‘vulnerable’ to bullying. At the same time, youth work provision and other support services are increasingly subject to ‘targeted’ (rather than universal) work. Such approaches essentialise and individualise ‘vulnerability’ as something ‘within’ a person, rather than a product of socio-cultural-political contexts. Combining our backgrounds in critical disability studies, critical psychology, and sociology, we are interested in proposals that examine and critique the notion of ‘vulnerability’, and how it is constructed and enacted in education and (youth) service provision. The suggested research approach is qualitative, within which artsbased and/or participatory methods could be adopted.