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Jeffrey Bennett

Over the past two decades, crip theory has evolved into a vibrant field of study for generating new forms of knowledge that scrutinize ableist assumptions of the social world and that strive to incorporate diffuse bodily experiences into otherwise restrictive cultural structures. In doing so, thinkers indebted to crip theory have developed original categories of epistemological consideration, often referred to as “cripistemologies.” As a mode of critique, crip is situated as both a methodology and a sensibility; it is both a tool and an attitude. Three discernable qualities of crip theory as it relates to Communication Studies have tended to emerge in the literature: normative understandings of the body, the contingent materialization of crip practices, and the political character of crip. These touchstones provide a useful orientation for capturing the scope of crip theory in Communication Studies, including in the areas of media representation, public culture, and performance studies.