We have received a collection of print and archive material from the University’s Centre for Disability Studies. A strength of the Centre for Disability Studies’ Collection is the great variety of campaigning literature produced by, and for, disabled people it contains. Much of the material was generated by regional bodies such as the Greater Manchester Coalition of Disabled People, Disability West Midlands, Leeds Disability Information Network, the West of England Coalition of Disabled People, and the Greater London Association of Disabled People.
The collection includes papers from other organizations focusing on particular conditions, such as spinal injuries, neuromuscular impairments, learning difficulties, polio and blindness. Yet others speak for disabled women or LGBT people. All of these bodies work to develop solidarity among disabled people, to raise awareness of the difficulties they face, and to campaign for improvements in their treatment by officialdom and society in general.
J. H. Taylor’s “Against the Tide” is a study of war-resisters in the South London borough of Southwark in the First World War, based on local newspapers and other primary sources. Opposition to conscription came from organizations such as the No Conscription Fellowship, the Independent Labour Party and the Quakers, as well as from individual objectors and campaigners.
Those directly affected were all men, but women played a vigorous part in campaigning. Taylor gives a detailed study of the proceedings of the Military Service Tribunals which examined individual cases. There are some vivid accounts of the brutality and torture suffered by conscientious objectors in prisons and barracks.