About Me

My name is Rebekah. I am a writer and a teacher who lives in a very small, very old house with two cranky orange cats and a sometimes-cranky, mostly-delightful partner in Kansas City. In the spring of 2017 I finished my PhD in creative nonfiction and disability studies at the University of Kansas, and the following fall I started teaching English to a crew of high school students. I am interested in the powerful connection between the cultural stories we tell and the world we live in, from physical spaces and economic opportunities to social roles and interpersonal relationships. As a teacher, I invite my students to think critically about these cultural narratives and challenge them to hone their skills as writers participating in their communities. My academic interests consider self-representation, narratives of embodiment, life writing from social media to memoir, and disability as an identity. I write personal essays that participate in the stories being told about disability, some of which are linked on this website. I also run an Instagram account where I regularly craft “mini-memoirs” that explore what it means to live in my particular (crippled, female) body. I am currently working on a memoir that considers the familial, medical, and religious narratives that shaped my early understanding of my impaired body. The story follows my struggle to reclaim the powerful voice needed to narrate my own stories. Most of all, I am invested in finding ways to create the spaces for marginalized voices to tell their own stories and represent their own experiences.

For more details on my educational and professional background, see my curriculum vitae.

4 thoughts on “About Me

  1. I loved your IG post re @onbeinginyourbody and I am really interested in and inspired by your work. I will be following. Just wanted to reach out and say – thank you for being you and sharing your story and journey. Ryan (@magnoliamomzy on IG)

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  2. Hi Rebekah,
    I’ve been following you on Instagram for a long time now and really love your writing and your voice. My friend and I are starting a book club in my town that strives to read books from many perspectives so that we can open our minds and get out of our own perceptions and bubbles. I came to your website because I really want to have works about and by those living with/experiencing disabilities and wondered if you had any suggestions for authors/books in this area? Any and all recommendations are welcome, not just on this subject; we are really trying to represent books/perspectives different from our own. Would love to hear your thoughts on any and all books that might have challenged your perspective or that you think may challenge the perspective of someone who does not live with a disability. Thanks so much!

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    1. Hi Sarah,
      What a rad bookclub! Sounds like the kind I’d want to be a part of 🙂 Okay, so recommendations! There are so many worthwhile reads, but Lucy Grealy’s Autobiography of a Face is one of my all-time favorites. Jean-Dominique Bauby’s The Diving Bell and The Butterfly is an experience all its own. Eli Clare can be a bit on the academic side but writes stunning, thought-provoking prose (right now I’m reading Brilliant Imperfection, but Exile and Pride is also great). Louise Krug’s memoir (Louise: Amended) and her collection of essays (Tilted) are both really engaging. Nancy Mairs has been writing about living in her disabled body for decades and has so many collections of essays and memoirs worth spending some time with. Georgina Kleege is another prolific disabled writer that you might consider. I’m also reading Roxane Gay’s book Hunger right now; she’s writing from the perspective of living in a fat body, but I’ve been amazed how much her narration resonates with my experience in a disabled body. It’s a challenging book rich with (sometimes very painful but always meaningful) detail and reflection. I hope that sends you in a worthwhile direction! I’d love to hear what you all end up reading and what you think!
      XO, Rebekah

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