The Oberlin Review

Jen Deerinwater

Off The Cuff: Jen Deerwater, Indigenous Activist and Journalist

November 8, 2019

Jen Deerinwater is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, bisexual, Two Spirit, multiply-disabled journalist, and organizer. Deerinwater writes on a variety of topics, including national politics, reproductive justice, ableism, resource extraction, and justice for indigenous communities. Deerinwater is a contributor at Truthout, a Freedomways and New Economies Reporting Project fellow, and the Founder and Executive Director of Crushing Colonialism, an international, Indigenous multi-media collec...

ODR Reform, Obility Strengthens Dis/Ability Justice at Oberlin

Paige Reinstein

April 27, 2018

When talking about dis/ability justice on this campus, it is so easy to focus on everything that is not working. It is so easy to focus on the classmates who will not join us next year due to the institution’s failure to accommodate them. Yet for the first time, I also feel an overwhelming amount of support and optimism for dis/ability justice at Oberlin College. I am thankful for all of the students for organizing. While there is still much more work to do on the administrative end, I am grateful for all of the support that is emerging. Also, I am thankful for the administration, the Office of Disability Resources, and these students for all working toward making Oberlin accessible — or at least closer to it. Everyo...

Ableism Displayed Through Paralympics’ Lack of Attention

El Wilson, Opinions Editor

March 30, 2018

On March 18, 2018, the U.S. Paralympic sled hockey team won an unprecedented third-straight gold medal in the Winter Paralympics after beating Canada in overtime 2–1. This was after creaming Japan (10–0), the Czech Republic (10–0), South Korea (8–0), and Italy (10–1). Yet, the historic win didn’t make front page news. In fact, many people don’t even know what sled hockey is. To clarify, it’s hockey played on very small sleds that sit on top of two ice hockey blades. The players navigate the ice using two small hockey sticks with metal picks on the end of them. The rules are essentially the same as typical hockey. Even though the Paralympic Games have been around since 1948, they’ve only recently s...

Oberlin Must Embrace Disabled Students Without “Despites”

El Wilson, Contributing Writer

October 27, 2017

I don’t accept “despites.” They lead me to build walls between myself and my family. My best friends forcefully dismantle them. And I see their presence in romantic relationships as potentially abusive. I grew up with the idea that I would succeed, despite my disability. I spent hours in physical, occupational, and speech therapy in an attempt to “fix” me. Some of these hours were worthwhile because they made my body healthier and more mobile. Others — especially those spent in speech therapy — contributed to a negative body image and made me ashamed of my existence. Yet the adults in my life took every opportunity to tell me that I was smart, funny, and beautiful. I would be successful despite my disabi...

Support for ESAs Combats Ableism

Melissa Harris, Production Editor

December 9, 2016

As a long-time sufferer of emotional and mental disorders who struggles with depression and anxiety especially, I have sought almost every form of treatment under the sun: antidepressants, therapy, meditation, yoga, exercise. The list goes on. However, coming to college has made me realize an integral part of my mental wellbeing was missing once I arrived: my pet rabbit from home. I forgot the way my rabbit would sit by me when he was out of his hutch, allowing me to stroke his soft fur and calm my anxieties after a sleepless night. It was this September, at the beginning of my junior year, that I looked into getting an emotional support animal at Oberlin. Although my family did not want me to take our rabbit to colleg...

Activism Limited by Disregard for Disability

Auden Granger, Production Editor

December 9, 2016

Engagement in activism is a key facet of life and education for many Oberlin students. But what does it mean when you can’t access these types of activism? What does it mean when you’re excluded by default from the performances, speeches and workshops that define most students’ social and political work? Oberlin has a massive issue with accessibility. To put it more explicitly, Oberlin has a massive issue with acknowledging and incorporating disability at all. Disability is rarely considered in student activism and in the work that Oberlin student organizations do, despite the fact that disability intersects with every social inequality we work toward addressing. Ability status intersects with race, class, ge...

Content Warnings Needed as Accommodations

Cyrus Eosphoros, Staff Writer

February 27, 2015

Content Warning: This post contains discussion of common triggers, ableism on the part of the Oberlin administration and descriptions of media and conversations containing suicide, rape and parental abuse.  The first movie I had to watch for a literature class this semester contained, among other things, rape, suicide and physical and psychological abuse by a parent. I stopped watching somewhere around 40 minutes in, before the suicide, after everything else, and mentioned none of this in class. Neither did anyone else, setting aside any acknowledgement of these heavy and possibly triggering topics in favor of discussing whether a woman being a chef was sexist. In theory, this didn’t have to be the case. Last s...

Established 1874.