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Changing What It Means to Be “Normal”: A Grounded Theory Study of the Mobility Choices of People Who Are Blind or Have Low Vision (Online)

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Description of Changing What It Means to Be “Normal”: A Grounded Theory Study of the Mobility Choices of People Who Are Blind or Have Low Vision

Structured abstract: Introduction: The ability to travel to destinations outside of the home is important to social inclusion and quality of life, and it is one of the most significant challenges for people who are visually impaired (that is, those who are blind or have low vision). There has been little research into the underlying concerns of people who are visually impaired when making decisions about mobility. Methods: This grounded theory study explored the main mobility-related concerns of people who are visually impaired. It uses qualitative data drawn from a combination of online discussions; face-to-face, telephone, and e-mail interviews; and focus groups with people who are visually impaired and rehabilitation practitioners. Results: The primary concern of people who are visually impaired when making choices about where to go, and when and how to do so, was a desire to see oneself and to be seen by others as “normal.” Self-identity and perceived “normality” are subjective and changeable and are continually internally coreconstructed (that is, simultaneously and interdependently reinterpreted and reconceptualised) to achieve congruence between them. The mobility strategies used are those that are perceived as most “normal.” Discussion: Perceived “normality” has a powerful influence on behavior. By acknowledging this influence, rehabilitation services may be better able to promote autonomy and self-reliance. Implications for practitioners: To promote independence, rehabilitation services must change people's perception of what is “normal.” People must be supported to come to perceive fulfillment of valued social roles, autonomy, and self-reliance as “normal.”

Online Product Details:

ISBN: jvib090405
Year of publication: 2015
Availability: Immediately

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Other Titles by Elizabeth Ball, Colette Nicolle

Book Contributors:

Elizabeth M.Ball, Colette A.Nicolle