The experiences of disability in sociocultural contexts of India: Stigmatization and resilience

Misa Kayama, Christopher J Johnstone, Sandhya Limaye

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


This study reports on findings from 25 semi-structured, individual interviews with participants with visual, hearing, or mobility disabilities in India focusing on stigmatization and resilience, and how they are constructed within Indian sociocultural contexts. Participants’ experiences of disability and stigmatization were alleviated or exacerbated by sociocultural issues, including socioeconomic status, caste, and gender hierarchy. A lack of family support and access to education further reinforced stigmatization. The case from India underscores the importance of addressing these intersectional issues, as well as stigmatization and resilience, to comprehensively support individuals with disabilities. Implications for practice, disability policies, theories, and research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)596-610
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Social Work
Issue number4
StatePublished - Mar 28 2019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors thank Garima Pundir and Sumitra Ramachandran for their help with data collection and preliminary analyses, and Wendy Haight for her helpful comments on an earlier draft of this article. This study received funding through the Global Spotlight Major Award, University of Minnesota.

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2019.


  • Disability
  • India
  • resilience
  • sociocultural construction
  • stigmatization


Dive into the research topics of 'The experiences of disability in sociocultural contexts of India: Stigmatization and resilience'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this