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In this article, two adolescent sisters discuss and reflect upon the impact that the special education classification of one of them has had on their lives. The sisters, co-authors of this text, participated in designing the study and analyzing the data we produced; their voices are the core of this article. Issues about inclusion, the harms and benefits of special education classification, stigma, the multi-edged meanings of what it means to be “special,” and the often complicit roles of educators in perpetuating exclusionary policies all arise in the sisters’ discussions with each other, with their co-authors, and with pre-service teachers.


Originally published in Disability & Society. When citing article, please contact lead author for pagination in original publication. Gene Fellner, Mark Comesañas, Laritza Duperoy & Yaritza Duperoy (2017) What it means to be special: two sisters discuss their experiences, Disability & Society, 32:3, 323-343, DOI: 10.1080/09687599.2017.1296817



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