Identities and Perceptions: “Something That Is Missing”?*
Having looked at the way in which development interventions are implemented with disabled people, this chapter now attempts to lay down the factors that need to be taken into consideration in re-thinking these practices, and thus the importance of understanding how disability is perceived in countries like Burkina Faso. This means understanding how disabled people identify, self- and societal perceptions of disability, and how these are interlinked. The chapter begins by introducing the concept of categorising and identifying disability, which influences the identifications and perceptions of disabled people. The second section then explores how disabled people in Burkina Faso self-identify, that is, what disability means for them and how this affects their lived experiences. The chapter then looks at the significance of social perceptions of disability and how these influence disabled people’s self-perceptions. Finally, it examines the emerging affirmation of disability in Burkina Faso among some disabled people, as well as what these identities signify in the Burkinabe context.
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