A few words about dignity: An introspective study of a person with disability


  • Agnieszka Dul Independent Scholar




disability syndrome, presence, absence, dignity, moral accusation, autopoiesis, paradoxes, deed, Deus


In the article, I present issues of presence, existential absence, and the sense of dignity of a person with a disability. I present these issues for the first time and attempt to show disability “from within”, a perspective to which I am no stranger as I myself am disabled.
The issues of presence, absence and human dignity have always fascinated me. Hence, in this text, they are “filtered” through my dramatic and sometimes even traumatic personal experiences. In conveying these experiences, I never forget what human existence should be – the fact that there should be dignity, presence and being. Is my human experience marked by this? At some point in the text I make a “moral accusation” in connection with this issue. Additionally, I have never forgotten (and will never forget) the person who helped me to “reborn” for myself, people and the world. “The significant person and her achievement in relation to the author” is my modest expression of gratitude to someone because of whom I LIVE. However, the central points of reference in this text are questions of human dignity and presence. They form its axis and are its guiding categories of analysis. I conclude by stating that these are important, even essential issues in order to understand the phenomenon of what it is to be human. And to be unique in that humanity.
The main research question which I pose is the following: Does society see that people with disabilities have dignity? Furthermore, the thesis I propose and which I believe arises from this question is: society has little recognition of the dignity of people with disabilities. More specific research questions will be quoted below in the text which, in terms of methodology, has been written using an autoethnographic approach (Wolcott 2004, Kacperczyk 2014, Urbańska 2012). The choice of this highly qualitative methodology was guided by the assumption that autoethnography allows a subjective presentation of specific fragments of those events inscribed in the category of human dignity described here. This will be an analytical autoethnography, after Canagarajah (2012), because through writing I analyze the emotional, mental and situational states that I have had to face in the past, while some of the experiences that generated these states resonate with me to the present. Last but not least, it is my hope that my openly described states of mind will contribute to some betterment of this particular area of human existence in its extremely important, social and cultural dimensions.


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How to Cite

Dul, A. (2022). A few words about dignity: An introspective study of a person with disability. Beyond Philology An International Journal of Linguistics, Literary Studies and English Language Teaching, (19/2), 93–117. https://doi.org/10.26881/bp.2022.2.04