Seeing disability differently
My name is Zu Filipiuk, I'm from Poland and I'm studying English Literature and Film & Television Studies.
My ambition is to change the portrayal of disability in film, social media and literature.
Being a person with a disability myself, I have noticed that we are usually portrayed as laughable, pathetic or unlovable. The plot always revolves around the struggle rather than around the person. In the 21st century, social media and television have a huge influence on the everyday reality and the way minorities are portrayed can craft the way society views and interacts with them. When I grew up, I had no strong role models with a disability. I still don't.
But that can be changed. Because people often don't realise what is wrong with the present representation, the first step could be starting a conversation. Next, I would start casting actors with disabilities to play a variety of roles that are not necessarily based on their physical 'impairment'.
We don't need roles for the disabled. We need actors with disabilities to play what would be considered 'normal' roles. Then, and only then, will the representation be balanced.
Zu is one of the University of Glasgow’s Future World Changers: students with ambitions to improve lives across the globe. Follow their journeys using #UofGFWC.