GDI Hub, World Health Organisation Collaborating Centre for Assistive Technology


Event Recording | Disability and Disciplines: Curious Interconnections

10 July 2023, 1:00 pm–2:00 pm

Graphic depicting interconnected modules in the shape of a globe

Watch Professor Hemachandran Karah as he explores the curious interplay between life histories of disabled people and academic disciplines.

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to









UCL Cinema and Online (Hybrid)
1 Pool Street
E20 2AF

UCL's Global Disability Innovation Hub were delighted to host a lunchtime guest lecture and Q&A with Dr Hemachandran Karah, Associate Professor at the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology Madras on 10 July 2023.


Watch Event Recording


Lecture topic

Academic disciplines such as literary studies, sociology, and computer science are preferred by many blind students who have grown-up learning that a generation of students with a similar condition, were able to navigate them successfully.

However, disciplines across humanities, social sciences, management, sciences, and technology can become stumbling blocks if we care less about the disabled people who come to them with varying requirements for accommodation, and if we fail to make reasonable adjustments.

Watch Dr Hemachandran Karah as he explores why certain disciplines are favoured by disabled students and teachers, and how disability studies informs his teaching, research, and advocacy as a blind academic.

Who we are

This event was hosted by Global Disability Innovation Hub (which sits within UCLIC in the Department of Computer Science) at Pool Street Campus, on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London.


About the Speaker

Prof Hemachandran Karah

at Indian Institute of Technology Madras

Dr Hemachandran Karah is an Associate Professor at the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, Indian Institute of Technology Madras. He has published a dozen peer-reviewed essays in academic journals and books. Karah co-edits the global section of the journal Review of Disability Studies (RDS). Recently, he received a fellowship grant from Indian Foundation for Arts so as to pursue a collaborative research project on the theme of theological accessibility. Prior to this, Karah was one of the principal investigator of a global project on Covid and mental health organised by Ohio State University. Karah is now co-authoring a companion volume on Disability Studies. This is in addition to a couple of courses on the field that he has offered on the NPTEL platform.

Karah immensely enjoys conversing with students! They aid him finetune his expertise in Disability Studies, aesthetics, literary criticism, and comparative musicology.

More about Prof Hemachandran Karah