We envision a society where everyone believes the world is better because of disabled people.
The Paul K. Longmore Institute on Disability at San Francisco State University studies and showcases disabled people's experiences to revolutionize social views. Through public education, scholarship and cultural events, the Longmore Institute shares disability history and theory, promotes critical thinking, and builds a broader community.
Our work will be guided and informed by our beliefs and commitments to:
Common Good – We believe that disability is a significant component of the human experience. Our work reveals human potential and enriches the lives of disabled and non-disabled people alike.
Scholar-Activism - We work to create bridges so that academics and activists can better support each other in the shared pursuit of social change.
Knowledge – We uphold traditional academic rigor and embrace emerging scholarship in the field of disability studies.
Community – With the experiences of disability always at the center, we create spaces where disabled people and our allies can come together and celebrate disability culture.
Intersectionality – We seek to include all aspects of disabled people’s lives, understanding that intersecting identities are an often-unaddressed part of the disability experience.
Joy – We counter the often-negative stereotypes of disability by incorporating laughter, whimsy and creativity into our work whenever possible.
Integrity – We act with honesty and transparency, welcome difficult conversations, and hold ourselves accountable to the communities we serve.
"Prejudice is a far greater problem than any impairment; discrimination is a bigger obstacle to overcome than any disability.” — Paul K. Longmore
The Paul K. Longmore Institute on Disability continues its founder's legacy by working at the intersection of scholarship and advocacy to celebrate people with disabilities as innovative forces for social change. Paul K. Longmore, a historian of disability, activist and polio survivor, started the Institute on Disability in 1996. When he passed away in August 2010, Longmore left a legacy that the Institute seeks to honor and expand. SF State and generous donors created an endowment for the Institute, and in 2012, hired professor Catherine Kudlick as director and Emily Beitiks, Ph.D., to serve as the associate director.
The Institute is a research service organization which provides a supportive infrastructure for activities complementary to the social justice mission of the University and resides in the College of Liberal and Creative Arts. In addition to our director and associate director, the Institute has Longmore Student Fellows and a nine-person advisory council.