Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Title

Disability Studies Quarterly


This paper considers Indra Sinha's Animal's People (2007), a fictional re-telling of the Union Carbide Bhopal disaster, as a productive site of mutual engagement between postcolonial studies and disability studies, two fields rarely in dialogue. Dominant models of disability, I argue, do not translate to formerly colonial sites and/or sites that bear the burden of global capitalism. The uneven processes of globalization—which produce disabling environments—necessitate that we revise established conceptions of disability, which are derived largely from US/UK contexts. I explore a socio-spatial model that emphasizes the necessity of specific locational axes in figurations of disability. This enables more flexible understandings of embodiment, which may shift and be shifted by the particularities of space. A victim of the disaster, Animal—the novel's protagonist—navigates Bhopal's streets on all fours. His unique spatial imaginary, contingent on his particular form of embodiment, produces a local and embodied knowledge that foregrounds points of convergence between anti-colonial, anti-capitalist, and disability politics.


postcolonialism, globalization, Bhopal, India, Union Carbide, neoliberalism, transnational, contemporary English literature, industrial disaster, environmental studies






2159-8371 (Online); 1041-5718 (Print)


Archived as published.

Volume 1 through Volume 20, no. 3 of Disability Studies Quarterly is archived on the Knowledge Bank site; Volume 20, no. 4 through the present can be found on this site under Archives.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.