Disclosure Blues: Should You Tell Colleagues About Your Mental Illness?
The Chronicle of Higher Education 2014
4 Pages Posted: 11 Jul 2022
Date Written: June 13, 2014
Should higher education faculty with mental disabilities disclose their disabilities to their colleagues or institutions? In this essay, drawing on interviews, research, and my own experience as a disabled person, I show why disclosure is rarely the right choice. Stigma attached to mental disability in higher education is still too strong. In particular, the risk of repercussions for graduate students, contingent faculty, and pre-tenure faculty is especially high because of their lack of institutional power. We are, in academia, still devoted to the mythos of the good man speaking well, the professor as bastion of reason, the cogito ergo sum. (Essay originally published in The Chronicle of Higher Education Vitae, no longer in print.)
Keywords: mental health, mental illness, mental disability, neurodiversity, disability, disability studies
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