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It is also to argue that these disadvantages are dialectically related to an ideology or group of ideologies which justify and perpetuate this situation. Beyond this it is to make the claim that such disadvantages and their supporting ideologies are neither natural nor inevitable. Finally it involves the identification of some beneficiary of this state of affairs. The term oppression, while regularly encountered in discussion of racial and sexual disadvantage and of the ‘national question’, does not appear in encylopediae of social science, nor in the generally useful Dictionary of Marxist Thought 24 Paul Abberley (Bottomore, 1983).

1979) Journal of Personality, 46, pp. 606–609. Kaufert, J. & Kaufert, P. (1984) Methodological and conceptual issues in measuring the impact of longterm disability, Social Science and Medicine, 19, pp. 609–619. Kinnersley, P. (1973) The Hazards of Work (London, Pluto Press). Leonard, P. (1984) Personality and Ideology, Ch. 8 (Basingstoke, Macmillan). Mitchell, P. K. (London, RADAR). Muller, M. (1982) The Health of Nations (London, Faber). Navarro, V. (1982) The labour process and health international, Journal of Health Services, 12, pp.

It cannot answer the question, why, if disablement is the ‘normal condition of humanity’ are only some members of the human race accorded the label ‘disabled’? Common features of disadvantage A characteristic of the literature of racial and sexual oppression is that it identifies certain generally common features of economic social and psychological disadvantage suffered by members of the oppressed group. The nature and extent of these disadvantages is by no means uniform or constant between groups or within groups over time, and can only be adequately described after detailed empirical investigation.

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