Negotiating Disability: Disclosure and Higher Education

Collection co-edited with Laura T. Eisenman and James M. Jones. University of Michigan Press, 2017.

“Joins a growing body of literature on disclosure, passing, and disability identity. Its focus on higher education allows for a deep exploration of theory while also illuminating the processes and implications of disclosure in this setting.” —Allison C. Carey, Shippensburg University

“Remarkably thorough and bold . . . the book will inform higher education administrators, staff and faculty who reify the ‘progress narrative’ retold about diversity and inclusion, when such accounts rarely consider disabled faculty and students. This book is sure to become a classic resource for many in higher education.” —Linda Ware, State University of New York at Geneseo

“As an edited collection it offers diverse experiences (too many to mention here), which are expressed through a variety of research methods that often include the voices of disabled people. While disability disclosure is often associated with students, this book offers insights into the situation for faculty [and] staff, providing a more complete view of how disability is negotiated within higher education.” –Erin Pritchard, Journal of Literary and Cultural Disability Studies

“offers a strong collection of theoretical essays that dissect the notion of disability as identity within a cultural landscape. Importantly, it gives central stage to the notion of intersectionality – which has so far been lacking in Disability Studies, even if it is otherwise often explored in general terms within Critical Studies – particularly when it comes to race and sexual orientation.” —Frederic Fovet, Disability and Society

“The highlight of the book is the storytelling, supported with theoretical analysis and practical examples, that creates understanding of disability. . . . The authors and editors will succeed in ‘encourag[ing] not only individual conversations, but campus- and community-wide conversatiosn about diversity and disability’ (p. 362) as those involved in higher education take a first step toward greater inclusion of those with disabilities by reading Negotiating Disability: Disclosure and Higher Education, increasing their knowledge, and sparking work toward a more just experience for all in higher education.” –Carol Rogers-Shaw, New Horizons in Adult Education & Human Resource Development

Toward a New Rhetoric of Difference

Studies in Writing and Rhetoric Series. Urbana, IL: National Council of Teachers of English, 2014.

“This book is required reading for those who are committed to pushing back on neoliberal logics of difference and embracing ethical and responsible engagements of difference.” –Kelly A. Whitney, WPA Journal

“Teachers and scholars interested in cultivating an awareness of difference in pedagogical practice will find Kerschbaum’s book not only an innovative theoretical framework for considering difference but also a well-articulated set of tools for navigating the play of difference in our classrooms, among our students, among ourselves.” –Tara Wood, Reflections: A Journal of Public Writing, Civic Rhetoric, and Service Learning

“For those just beginning to consider disability in the context of diversity and difference, Kerschbaum models a passionate but flexible approach to considering how disability shapes scholarship on difference, and she offers a disability-accessible scholarship that emphasizes disability as always relevant, not simply topical. For disability scholars, she raises the bar on writing with disability, rather than about disability, much as she convincingly argues that we learn with, and not about, students on matters of difference.” –Amy Vidali, Disability Studies Quarterly

“If we take away only one thing from Kerschbaum’s book, it is that composition instructors must resist the impulse to think we know something about our students. Instead, we must come to learn the identities and backgrounds of our students together through open engagement and patient listening to understand, and we must also encourage that same ethic with our students when they move through our classrooms as well as out of them.” –Stephanie Larson, enculturation

“Kerschbaum argues that we must position difference as a rhetorical performance, which “resituates the problem away from learning about, and thus needing to know students, toward learning with, and thus always coming-to-know students” (57). This highlights the importance of finding ways to identify with students in ways that are interactive and don’t simply impose what we know (or think we know) on a situation because we can never fully understand difference.” –Allison Hitt, Composition Forum

“As a heuristic, marking difference can be adapted into a critical methodology to aid research design, data analysis, and engagement with marginalized communities and cultures. In sum, Kerschbaum has offered a transformative framework that allows writing scholars and teachers to create more pedagogical innovations to empower reflexivity and heteroglossia in the classroom and academy at large.” –Chanon Adsantham, Composition Studies

“I admire how Toward a New Rhetoric of Difference helps us reread everyday interactions in the classroom to better understand what is at stake when we or our institutions talk about diversity. In particular, Kerschbaum offers a productive reformulation of identity politics in the classroom that emphasizes the dynamic and dialogic ways identities and social relations are produced and negotiated through everyday interaction.” –Travis Grandy, The WAC Journal

Journal Issues

Articles and Book Chapters

Essays and Blog Entries

Training Document

  • Price, Margaret and Stephanie L. Kerschbaum. “Promoting Supportive Academic Environments for Faculty with Mental Illnesses.” For the Temple University Collaborative on Community Inclusion of Individuals with Psychiatric Disabilities. (2017). 29 pages. Available at