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Dialogues on disABILITY: "Good Blood, Bad Blood" | Arts & Culture

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Dialogues on disABILITY: "Good Blood, Bad Blood"
Dialogues on disABILITY: "Good Blood, Bad Blood"

The Museum of disABILITY History is pleased to welcome its latest addition to the Dialogues on disABILITY Speaker Series: author Michael L. Wehmeyer, PhD., who will focus on his book, Good Blood, Bad Blood: Science, Nature, and the Myth of the Kallikaks. The event will take place on Saturday, October 19, 2013 from 11 a.m. to 1p.m. at the Museum of disABILITY History, 3826 Main Street in Buffalo. It will include a candid question-and-answer with the author.

Good Blood, Bad Blood explores the work of psychologist Henry Herbert Goddard who, in 1912, developed the pseudonym “Kallikak” as a surname for a family with whom he worked. The name is derived from the Greek words kallos (good) and kakos (bad), and was meant to illustrate the eugenic belief that nature and heredity were unalterable forces leading to degeneracy. “Deborah Kallikak,” an inmate at Goddard’s institution for the feeble-minded, became one of the doctor’s primary case studies. Good Blood, Bad Blood does far more than relay Goddard’s findings, however. Wehmeyer completely disproves the twentieth century psychologist’s ideas and retells Deborah’s story in a manner that is both compelling and vital to our understanding of this American tragedy.

Dr. Wehmeyer is a professor of Special Education at the University of Kansas, and also serves as director of the Kansas University Center on Developmental Disabilities. Additionally, Dr. Wehmeyer is Senior Scientist at Beach Center on Disability. He has published numerous written works on topics related to special education, intellectual disability, eugenics and self-determination. In 2013, Dr. Wehmeyer was awarded the Distinguished Researcher Award for lifetime contributions to research on intellectual disability by The Arc of the United States.

The Dialogues on disABILITY event with Dr. Wehmeyer is $5 for adults and $2.50 for seniors, students and human service employees. The event fee includes admission to the Museum of disABILITY History. For more information or to register, call 716-629-3626.

The Museum of disABILITY History, a project of People Inc., is dedicated to the collection, preservation, and display of artifacts relating to the history of people with disabilities. The mission is to tell the story of the lives, triumphs, and struggles of people with disabilities as well as society’s reactions. The Museum of disABILITY History, located at 3826 Main Street in Buffalo, NY, offers educational exhibits, programs and activities that expand community awareness.


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