Social and Cultural Perspectives

  • Anita K. F. Li
Part of the Springer Series on Human Exceptionality book series (SSHE)


What is exceptional in one culture may not be considered so in another. What is considered “problem” behavior in one context may not be considered so in another. Problems are defined by their context, especially behavior in the psychosocial domain. Our response to exceptional conditions, be they mental retardation or giftedness, is a function of our values and our frames of reference. Exceptionality is a matter of culture and perception (Noblit, Paul, & Schlechty, 1991). Thus, it is important to consider social and cultural perspectives in the study of exceptionality. This chapter provides an overview of the theory and research underlying an understanding of the psychosocial correlates of exceptionality from both a social and a cultural perspective. The topics to be addressed are: the meaning of a social-cultural perspective; the arguments for a social-cultural perspective; peer relationships of exceptional children; the media; and implications for assessment, intervention, and prevention.


Community Psychology American Sign Language Learn Disability Deaf Child Cultural Perspective 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anita K. F. Li
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Educational PsychologyUniversity of CalgaryCalgaryCanada

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