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Parent Advocacy and Attitudes Towards Cerebral Palsy in the Mid-20th Century

  • Free
  • Discussion
  • Auto-captioned
  • British Sign Language

What you’ll do

Watch a recording of Dr Teresa Hillier speaking about how parents of children born with cerebral palsy in the mid-20th century took action to confront how educational inequality disadvantaged their children.

You will learn how the medical classification of cerebral palsy as a specific condition was imprecise, resulting in children often being summarily denounced as ‘ineducable’.  

The talk reveals how emotive language and imagery were used in a nationwide campaign to raise the profile of cerebral palsy. Its success inadvertently led to individuals being portrayed as one homogenous group within popular culture. 

This perception has overshadowed the positive contributions made by parents and organisations to the improvement in knowledge and practice relating to cerebral palsy.



Need to know


There will be auto-generated captions for this event.

British Sign Language

This event is British Sign Language interpreted. An interpreter will be embedded in the event stream/visible to all attendees and will interpret what is discussed into BSL for d/Deaf, hard of hearing and deafened attendees.

For more information, please visit our Accessibility page. If you have any queries about accessibility, please email us at access@wellcomecollection.org or call 0 2 0. 7 6 1 1. 2 2 2 2

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About your speaker

Dr Teresa Hillier

Teresa Hillier obtained her PhD from Swansea University in 2020, examining the formation of parent-advocacy groups established in the mid-20th century that campaigned on behalf of children with cerebral palsy. She is currently researching the wider influences of individuals who made significant contributions to a greater understanding of cerebral palsy.