Designer Diversity: Constructing Bodies and Backgrounds through Contemporary Design Theory

By Stephen Gilson and Elizabeth DePoy.

Published by The Humanities Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

In this paper, we discuss how humanities approaches to design and symbol can inform and deepen analysis of diversity. We begin with a brief review of central elements of design and branding, followed by an historical examination of the lexical changes of the concept of diversity over time from one of variation to oxymoronic, nomothetic euphemism. We then examine design and branded diversity through both market-based and humanities lenses, exposing the distinction in purpose and outcome of each approach. We conclude with an examination of how humanities fields such as visual culture, aesthetics, rhetoric, and philosophy which chase after the veiled profit-motivated design and branding have much to offer to revisioning diversity.

Keywords: Design, Branding, Diversity

International Journal of the Humanities, Volume 6, Issue 4, pp.177-188. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.550MB).

Dr. Stephen Gilson

Professor, University of Maine, Orono, Maine, USA

Dr. Stephen Gilson is currently professor of Interdisciplinary Disability Studies at the University of Maine, focusing his scholarship and theory on diversity policy and the promotion of universally tolerant environments. He has authored and co-authored over 40 articles and books, and recently has co-produced multi-media, universally accessible texts with co-author, Dr. Elizabeth DePoy. Dr. Gilson is currently pursuing several collaborative research agendas all aimed at advancing universal access to community resources including web and electronic information. Dr. Gilson presents his work locally, regionally, nationally and internationally and has collaborative relationships with international scholars. In service, Dr. Gilson works through ASTOS, a non-profit organization that engages systematic thinking and action to promote social justice and human rights.

Dr. Elizabeth DePoy

Professor, University of Maine, Orono, Maine, USA

Dr. Elizabeth DePoy is currently the Coordinator of Interdisciplinary Disability Studies at the University of Maine, focusing her scholarship and theory on design, embodiment, and diversity. She has authored and co-authored over 50 articles and books, and recently has produced multi-media, universally accessible texts with co-author, Dr. Stephen Gilson. Dr. DePoy is currently pursuing several collaborative research agendas all aimed at advancing progressive criticism and contemporary theory of diversity and linking these to the fashioning of tolerance in global communities and environments. Dr. DePoy presents her work locally, regionally, nationally and internationally and has collaborative relationships with international scholars. she conducts her service work through ASTOS, a non-profit organization that engages systematic thinking and action to promote social justice and human rights.

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