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Mikael Mery Karlsson

Mikael Mery Karlsson

Vikarierande adjunkt

Mikael Mery Karlsson

”Gå eller rulla – Alla vill knulla!” : Funktionsrättsaktivism i nyliberala landskap

"Walking or rolling - everybody wants to fuck!" : Disability activism in neoliberal landscapes


  • Mikael Karlsson

Summary, in English

This study follows groups in Sweden that are involved in a political struggle to change norms regarding sexuality and disability. The groups are mostly connected to the disability movement or the movement of sexual politics. The following questions have guided the research process: How do the groups describe their activities? What strategies do they use? What relations can be identified between them? What obstacles and possibilities do they meet? What space of action is created and maintained for the struggle, taking into account the political, cultural and economic context that they act within?

In total, 43 interviews were conducted, predominantly with persons active in the struggle. Furthermore, the analysis is based on participation in the groups’ activities and archival studies of their publications, applications and reports to the funding agencies.

The study concludes that an emphasis on knowledge and education always has been and continues to be the main focus for the groups’ political struggle. During the decade of 2010, this focus on education was related to norm criticism (normkritik), which enabled the activists to turn the focus from the deviant to the prescriptive normal. During the years of austerity within welfare services for disabled persons, the political struggle has shifted from a struggle mostly run for and by disability organisations to a situation where more able-bodied allies participate in the struggle, a development that is analysed with help of Crip Theory and the concept of “discursive climate of tolerance”. The analysis also shows how the fund-giving agencies and the projectification of civil society depoliticise, professionalise and dematerialise the political struggle.

This dissertation’s main contribution is thus a case study of neoliberal co-optation, a process in which neoliberal hegemony incorporates and appropriates other discourses and practices. The dissertation argues for the need to crip neoliberal co-optation, i.e. to ask questions about what subjects that are interpellated and what space of action is thereby created.


  • Genusvetenskapliga institutionen








Arkiv förlag


  • Gender Studies


  • Social movements
  • civil society
  • neoliberalism
  • Crip theory
  • disability activism
  • sexual politics
  • extended case studies
  • institutional ethnography
  • Social movements
  • Civil Society
  • neoliberalism
  • Crip theory
  • disability activism
  • sexual politics
  • extended case studies
  • Institutional ethnography




  • Jens Rydström
  • Rebecca Selberg


  • ISBN: 978-91-7924-346-3


27 november 2020




Edens hörsal, Allhelgona kyrkogata 14, Lund


  • Cathrin Wasshede (Senior lecturer)