from Wisconsin Public Radio
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A car accident left John Callahan, just twenty-one years old, paralyzed below his armpits. He's gone on to become a very successful cartoonist, whose cartoons poke fun at disabilities and the idiosyncrasies of life. His work has been described as "rude, shocking, tasteless, and depraved" ? by his fans. Next time on To the Best of Our Knowledge, we'll see if he agrees. Also, life with cerebral palsy from playwright Lyle Victor Albert.
John Callahan is a C5-6 quadriplegic. With only limited arm movement, he's become a successful cartoonist. Callahan tells Steve Paulson why he doesn't shy away from outrageous cartoons. He says that for him, funny is politically incorrect. Also, Geneva Handy Southall is the author of "Blind Tom, The Black Pianist Composer: Continually Enslaved." She tells Jim Fleming about this nineteenth century American prodigy who could reproduce any sound he heard. Long after slavery officially ended, Blind Tom was still exhibited to make money for his white "guardians.
Lyle Victor Albert is a playwright who's gotten the most attention for his one-man show "Scraping the Surface," which recounts his experiences with cerebral palsy. Albert tells Steve Paulson that he found he likes performing, and does a very funny excerpt from the show dealing with the obstacles presented by those little individually wrapped packages -- butter, jam, or in this case, a condom.
Cassette copies are available at 1-800-747-7444. Ask for program number 01-02-18-B.
Martin Norden is the author of "The Cinema of Isolation: A History of Physical Disability in the Movies." He tells Anne Strainchamps that the disabled have been in films from the beginning, but only as stereotypes: bad disabled people get killed off, while good disabled people get cured. He cites "Coming Home" as the first film that showed what it's really like to be in a wheelchair.
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