Constituting Christopher: disability theory and Mark Haddon's; The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
n Extraordinary Bodies: figuring disability in American culture and literature, Rosemary Garland Thompson contends that disability is another 'culture-bound, physically justified difference to consider along with race, gender, class, ethnicity and sexuality' (1997, p.5). The two reigning models that have marked disability as a site of difference are the medical and the social; the former in both its benign and pernicious forms identifying the somatic and psychological markers of disability and scaffolding around these regimes of medical intervention and correction, the latter involving social recognition of disabilities, and identifying ways to 'establish social equity that do not depend on a medical response, but on modifying man-made societal arrangements' (Saunders 2004, p.2). The medical and social models have been critiqued by theorists in the field who have argued that they are not only underpinned by the view that disability is a 'personal medical tragedy' (Campbell 2004, p.443), but also that they are often mutually exclusive, failing to successfully cognate the culturally discursive, the socially regulated and the multiple realities of disabled people's lives (Price and Schildrick 2002). This paper will situate Mark Haddon's novel The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time (2003) within these current debates in disability theory, arguing that fictional representations such as Haddon's contribute powerfully to what Judy Singer calls a more 'ecological view of society', that is 'one that is more relaxed about different styles of being' (1999, p.67).