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Aphasia and labour inclusion: therapy, biopower, and encuentros
Aphasiology  (IF2.773),  Pub Date : 2021-08-13, DOI: 10.1080/02687038.2021.1957080


Background: This is a qualitative case study of Sara, a 32-year-old black woman with nonfluent aphasia. Aims: Based on critical disability theory and poststructuralist approaches, we analyse the relationship between speech-language therapy and labour inclusion as founded in normalcy expectations. Methods and Procedures: The data were collected mainly at home and during therapy. The participants included Sara, her mother, her father, a speech-language pathologist, and a possible employer. Main Contributions: Sara’s interactions are structured in spatial repertoires that assemble diverse elements into communication and not only linguistic structures. However, these assemblages do not represent accepted adult ways of communication, and therapy is focused on repairing broken linguistic skills for normalization as a requirement for labour inclusion. Sara’s therapy is a biopower practice that limits her possibilities for labour inclusion and life projects. Conclusions: We reconceptualize the therapy as encuentros for collective dialogue and imagined communities’ emergence. This reconceptualization is a must for changing the field and participation patterns of people with aphasia in the society.