Sam de Schutter
In the second half of the 20th century, disability became a ‘global’ concern with a universal definition, driven by the attention it received from international organizations (UN, WHO, ILO, Unesco, etc.). In my research, I will study how this translated into programs and interventions aimed at the so-called ‘developing countries’ and how this global flow of ideas, actions and experts impacted the way disability has been conceptualized and experienced locally. This will be done on the basis of two case studies: the two Congo’s, and more specifically their two capitals, Kinshasa and Brazzaville. My research is part of the ERC project “Rethinking Disability: The Global Impact of the International Year of Disabled Persons (1981) in Historical Perspective".
I studied history (BA and MA) at Ghent University, Belgium, where I graduated with a thesis on Congolese study migration to Belgium since independence. I also obtained an MA in social and cultural anthropology at Leuven University, Belgium, with a thesis on migration imaginaries in the city of Kinshasa, Congo. During my studies, I have completed two research stays in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. My fields of interest are African (postcolonial) history, the history of global health and development, disability history and historical anthropology.
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