Disability Allyship Resources

Click on the subject title that you are interested in learning more about! 

How Might You Use this Resource List as a Disability Ally?

  • Add resources to your personal library or suggest additions to your public or university library
  • Post a list of your favorite resources in a public space such as your work building or residence hall (e.g.,  bulletin board, doorway, office, etc.)
  • Start/attend a book club
  • Host a “coffee talk” to discuss a resource
  • Post a personal reflection or review of the resource on your social media or blog account
  • Share the link to this webpage with your family, friends, and co-workers
  • Integrate a resource into the content of your classroom or workshop
  • Host an author to speak at your local library or university unit

Discussion Questions to Ask Yourself or Others

  • Were any disability allies represented in the resource? What actions did the ally take that helped you identify them as an ally?  What verbal words or thoughts were expressed that helped you identify a specific character or author as an ally?
  • A microaggression is a term used for brief and commonplace daily verbal, behavioral, or environmental indignities, whether intentional or unintentional, that communicate hostile, derogatory, or negative prejudicial slights and insults toward any group, particularly culturally marginalized groups. Were any disability-related microaggressions portrayed or discussed in the resource? What was the impact of the microaggressions?
  • What kind of language did the resource use around disability? For instance, was person-first language such as “individual with a Traumatic Brain Injury” or identity-first language such as “Autistic Person” used? Brainstorm the impact our words have on individual and social attitudes, actions, and power structures.
  • Disability identity is defined by some as a person who possesses a positive sense of self and feelings of connection to, or solidarity with, the disability community. Describe what you perceive to be change in a character or author’s disability identity over time.
  • In what ways was there agreement or disagreement in the understanding of disability between the person with a disability and their family members, friends, community, and society? What was the impact of agreement? What was the impact of disagreement?
  • Share if and how disability culture was represented in the resource. (e.g., disability norms, sense of pride as a member in the group, certain values or attributes valued within the group such as advocacy or comfort with disability, language that the in-group can use that the out-group cannot, etc.)
  • Describe how the intersection of other social identities (gender, race, ethnicity, social class, sexual identity, age, religion, etc.) may have impacted the expression or understanding of disability within the individual with a disability.

Resource Key

Reading Level:  A (Adult; Contains language and/or content that may be unsuitable for young adults.)

Reading Level:  YA (Young adult; For young adults in Grades 5-12; more complicated plots and topics of general interest to the young adult population.)

Reading Level:  JF (Juvenile Fiction; Children’s fiction or chapter books; for children in Grades 2-6; ranging from 60 to 200 pages, the books are generally divided into chapters, contain fewer illustrations, and have more complicated plots or concepts than either AC or JE books.)

Reading Level:  JE (Juvenile Easy Reader; For children who are beginning to read on their own, such as those in Grades 1-2; ranging from 30 to 80 pages; illustrations are included to break up the text.)

Reading Level:  AC (Adult read to children; For Pre-K to Grade 3, ranging from 10 to 30 pages, with illustrations; typically designed for parents to read to their children.)

*Recommended by DRES students

**Recommended by DRES staff

General Topics on Disability 

(e.g., Disability oppression, civil rights, disability identity, and more!)


Disability in the Modern World: History of a Social Movement is a landmark online collection that fills the gap, with a comprehensive and international set of resources to enrich study in a wide range of disciplines from media studies to philosophy. At the completion, it will include 150,000 pages of sources along with 125 hours of video. 


Disability Justice – Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ) SURJ seeks to build a movement that is informed by anti-ableism, access and Disability Justice. We offer an introduction on our webpage to Disability Justice politics, practice and access, seeking to deepen our political analysis and re-imagine our cultural values within white racial justice organizing. In short, to fundamentally expand our base by building the capacity to engage disability activists with relevancy and respect.

*Jessica Kellgren-Fozard I’m a deaf YouTuber who, through warm and amusing videos adds vintage fabulousness to a life with disabilities and chronic illnesses. Showing that a little positivity will go a long way! My content encompasses not just vintage lifestyle and fashion but also disability and LGBTQ+ awareness. I make adorable, chatty videos about different aspects of life and cinematic travel blogs with my wife Claudia.


*Inspiration Porn Stella Young is a comedian and journalist who happens to go about her day in a wheelchair – a fact that doesn’t, she’d like to make clear, automatically turn her into a noble inspiration to all humanity. In this very funny talk, Young breaks down society’s habit to turning disabled people into “inspiration porn.”


Reading Level: A

Ability Magazine is the leading magazine to cover disability. Accessible information for people with disabilities, about people with disabilities. Features celebrities who have disabilities. 

Care Work Dreaming Disability Justice by Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha

*Disability and Theater: A Practical Manual for Inclusion in the Arts by Stephanie Barton-Farcas

**Disability Incarcerated: Imprisonment and Disability in the United States and Canada edited by Ben-Mishe, L., Chapman, C., Carey, A.

Don’t Call Me Inspirational: A Disabled Feminist Talks Back by Harilyn Rousso

**No Pity: People with Disabilities Forging a New Civil Rights Movement by Joseph Shapiro

Nothing About us Without Us: Disability Oppression and Empowerment by James Charlton

**Queer, Feminist, Crip by Alison Kafer

The Disabled God by Nancy L. Eiesland

**The Question of Access: Disability, Space, Meaning by Tanya Titchkosky

Reading Level:  YA

Are You Alone on Purpose? by Nancy Werlin

Extraordinary People with Disabilities by Deborah Kent and Kathryn A. Quinlan

Views from Our Shoes: Growing Up with a Brother or Sister with Special Needs by Donald Meyer

Reading Level:  JF

Rosie: A Visiting Dog’s Story by Stephanie Calmenson

Reading Level:  JE

I’m Like You, You’re Like Me: A Child’s Book about Understanding and Celebrating Each Other by Cindy Gainer

We Can Do It! by Laura Dwight

Reading Level:  AC

What It’s Like to Be Me by Helen Exley

Acquired Brain Injury


Reading Level:  JF

My Friend Ben by Wanda Gilberts Kachur

Reading Level:  AC

Elvin the Elephant Who Forgets by Heather Snyder



Reading Level:  YA

Cory’s Stories  by Jeanne Kraus

Reading Level:  JF

Eagle Eyes: A Child’s View of Attention Deficit Disorder by Jeanne Gehret, M.A.

First Star I See by Jaye Andras Caffrey

Zipper, the Kid with ADHD by Caroline Janover

Reading Level:  JE

Shelley: The Hyperactive Turtle by Deborah M. Moss

Reading Level:  AC

Eukee: The Jumpy Jumpy Elephant by Clifford L. Corman and Esther Trevino

Otto Learns About His Medicine: A Story About Medication for Hyperactive Children by Matthew Galvin

Blind/Low Vision


The Tommy Edison Experience Tommy Edison, who has been blind since birth, uses humor to answer the most popular questions about living without sight, takes on more challenges which test his other senses, and goes on adventures that allow him to experience things for the first time.

At First Sight “A blind man has an operation to regain his sight at the urging of his girlfriend and must deal with the changes to his life.”

The Color of Paradise “Mohammad, a boy at Tehran’s institute for the blind, waits for his dad to pick him up for summer vacation. While waiting, he realizes a baby bird has fallen from its nest: he chases away a cat, finds the bird, climbs a tree, and puts it back. His father finally comes and takes him to their village where his sisters and granny await. The lad is a loving student of nature and longs for village life with his family, but his father is ashamed of him, wanting to farm the boy out to clear the way for marriage to a woman who knows nothing of this son. Over granny’s objections, dad apprentices Mohammad far from home to a blind carpenter. Can anything bring father and son together?” 

Fanaa “Set in Delhi and the Kashmir Valley, a blind woman falls in love with a rakish tour guide who hides a terrible secret…”

Ray “The story of the life and career of the legendary rhythm and blues musician Ray Charles, from his humble beginnings in the South, where he went blind at age seven, to his meteoric rise to stardom during the 1950s and 1960s.”

Scent of a Woman “A prep school student needing money agrees to “babysit” a blind man, but the job is not at all what he anticipated.” 


Reading Level:  YA

Stevie Wonder by John Swenson

Reading Level:  JE

Naomi Knows It’s Springtime by Virginia L. Kroll

See You Tomorrow, Charles by Miriam Cohen

The Night Search by Kate Chamberlin

Reading Level:  AC

Knots on a Counting Rope by Bill Martin and John Archambault



Brian’s Song “True story of Brian Piccolo, Bears football player diagnosed with cancer, showing the relationship between Piccolo and Gale Sayers, despite their racial differences and the fact they are competing for the same position”

The Doctor “Jack McKee is a doctor with it all: he’s successful, he’s rich, and he has no problems…. until he is diagnosed with throat cancer. Now that he has seen medicine, hospitals, and doctors from a patient’s perspective, he realizes that there is more to being a doctor than surgery and prescriptions.” 

The Fault in Our Stars “Two teenage cancer patients begin a life-affirming journey to visit a reclusive author in Amsterdam.” 

Love Story “A boy and a girl from different backgrounds fall in love regardless of their upbringing – and then tragedy strikes.” 

Me and Earl and the Dying Girl An awkward high-school senior (Thomas Mann) and a gravely ill classmate (Olivia Cooke) surprise themselves by becoming inseparable friends.

My Life “‘My Life’ tells a story that sets your mind at work, wondering how you would feel and what you would do. The movie is about a man named Bob Jones who has received some good news and some bad news.” 

Restless “‘Restless’ is an uncommonly touching romance about a young man and woman who essentially worship at the shrines of their own deaths. The girl with infinite tact and sweetness is able to coax the boy back into the world of the living, even though we learn cancer will allow her only three more months of life.” 

Third Star “James and his three closest lifelong friends go on an ill-advised trip to the stunning coastal area of Barafundle Bay in West Wales. What follows is a touching and comical adventure dealing with friendship, heroism and love.” 

50/50 “Inspired by a true story, a comedy centered on a 27-year-old guy who learns of his cancer diagnosis, and his subsequent struggle to beat the disease.” 


Reading Level:  YA

Waiting for Johnny Miracle by Alice Hendricks Bach

Reading Level:  JE

Kathy’s Hats: A Story of Hope by Trudy Krisher

Cerebral Palsy


Crutches and Spice A graduate of Eastern University with a degree in creative writing and a minor in French from the Sorbonne, Imani Barbarin writes from the perspective of a black woman with Cerebral Palsy. She specializes in blogging, science fiction and memoir.


*Special Netflix Series, Actor-writer Ryan O’Connell stars in this semi-autobiographical series based on his memoir. He plays Ryan, a gay man with cerebral palsy who decides to do away with his identity as an accident victim and go after the life that he wants. After years of dead-end internships, blogging in his pajamas and mainly communicating through text, Ryan figures out how to take his life from bleak to chic as he gets ready to start limping toward adulthood.

Including Samuel-Inclusion starts out young; don’t fix the disability, fix the system;  Shot and produced over four years, Habib’s award-winning documentary film, Including Samuel, chronicles the Habib family’s efforts to include Samuel in every facet of their lives. The film honestly portrays his family’s hopes and struggles as well as the experiences of four other individuals with disabilities and their families. Including Samuel is a highly personal, passionately photographed film that captures the cultural and systemic barriers to inclusion.

Door to Door “A man with cerebral palsy is determined to become a salesman.”

My Left Foot “Christy Brown, born with cerebral palsy, learns to paint and write with his only controllable limb – his left foot.” 


Reading Level:  YA

Don’t Stop the Music by Robert Perske

Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper

Reading Level:  AC

Danny and the Merry-Go-Round by Nan Holcomb


Reading Level:  JE

Andy Opens Wide by Nan Holcomb

Can’t You Be Still? by Sarah Yates

Patrick and Ima Lou by Nan Holcomb


Reading Level:  JF

Adam and the Magic Marble by Adam and Carol Buehrens

Here’s What I Mean To Say… by Sarah Yates

Howie Helps Himself by Joan Fassler

I’m Joshua and “Yes I Can” by Joan Lenett Whinston

Cystic Fibrosis


65 Red Roses Cystic fibrosis documentary on Netflix; extremely awesome documentary following a girl who is waiting for a double lung transplant; shows that using the internet has helped CF patients who can’t necessarily interact with people, but there are still support systems out there

*Claire Wineland was an American activist and author. She was born with Cystic Fibrosis and later created a non-profit organization “Claire’s Place Foundation” supporting individuals with terminal and chronic illness. 

Deaf/Hard of Hearing


Sound and Fury This documentary controversy of cochlear implant shown within a single extended family one family wants the implant, the other doesn’t because of the pressure being brought in by the deaf culture the six year old daughter is asking for the implant while her parents are unsure.

Sound and Fury: Six Years Later This movie discusses heather and family getting cochlear implants / how it affected them Heather now attends a hearing/mainstream school and plays sports

Heather Artinian from Sound and Fury This TED talk focuses on the “Heather world” because she doesn’t want to just be a part of the deaf culture or the hearing culture, but both summarizes what happened after the Sound and Fury documentaries

Switched at Birth This TV show focuses on two girls who were “switched at birth”; one is hard of hearing, one is not discusses cochlear implant in first episode; father who raised hearing child wants other child (his real one) to get the implant while the mother who raised the daughter who was deaf was against the implant. More of a Hollywood point of view of disability but still a resource.

Children of a Lesser God Starting his new job as an instructor at a New England school for the deaf, James Leeds (William Hurt) meets Sarah Norman (Marlee Matlin), a young deaf woman who works at the school as a member of the custodial staff. A romance slowly develops between the pair in spite of Sarah’s withdrawn emotional state due in part to her difficult relationship with her mother (Piper Laurie). Matlin, who is deaf in real life, won the Academy Award for Best Actress for this, her first film role

Black-Paul (Dhritiman Chaterji) and Catherine McNally (Shernaz Patel) give birth to their first daughter, Michelle (Rani Mukherji), who can neither hear nor see. Not knowing how to care for a deaf and blind child, they isolate their daughter from the outside world and as a result, she is ill-behaved and emotionally distraught. Paul even considers putting Michelle in a mental hospital until an eccentric teacher with a questionable past (Amitabh Bachchan) offers to help

The Miracle Worker Blind and deaf after suffering a terrible fever as a baby, young Helen Keller (Patty Duke) has spent years unable to communicate, leaving her frustrated and occasionally violent. As a last chance before she is institutionalized, her parents (Inga Swenson, Andrew Prine) contact a school for the blind, which sends half-blind Annie Sullivan (Anne Bancroft) to teach Helen. Helen is initially resistant, but Annie gradually forms a bond with her and shows Helen ways of reaching others.


Reading Level:  JF

Ludwig van Beethoven: Musical Pioneer by Carol Greene

Reading Level:  JE

When I Grow Up by Candri Hodges

Reading Level:  AC

A Very Special Friend by Dorothy Hoffman Levi

Silent Observer by Christy MacKinnon

Thomas Alva Edison: Great Inventor by David A. Adler

A Picture Book of Helen Keller by David A. Adler

Intellectual Disabilities


Best Boy/Best Man Director Ira Wohl documents three years in the life of her cheerful, mentally handicapped 52-year-old cousin, Philly Wohl, whose elderly parents have recently started to prepare him for the day when they can no longer be his caretakers. Ira follows Philly as he travels from his apartment in Queens into Manhattan, where he takes classes to learn to care for himself. Slowly, Philly begins to learn the ways of the world and becomes more self-reliant and independent.

Girlfriend A young man with Down syndrome romances a single mother who is mixed up with a violent ex.

Yo, Tambien A recent university graduate with Down syndrome falls in love — on his first day at work — with Laura, a woman who spends her nights in the city’s crowded clubs and singles bars. The two begin a bittersweet friendship that puts them both on the road to happiness.

I am Sam A compelling story of Sam Dawson (Sean Penn), a mentally-challenged father raising his daughter Lucy (Dakota Fanning) with the help of a unique group of friends. As Lucy turns seven and begins to intellectually surpass her father, their close bond is threatened when their unconventional living arrangement comes to the attention of a social worker who wants Lucy placed in foster care

The Other Sister A girl with an intellectual disability proves herself to be every bit as capable as her “perfect” sister when she moves into an apartment and begins going to college. 

Radio In a racially divided town, coach Jones (Ed Harris) spots a mentally disabled African-American student named Radio (Cuba Gooding Jr.) near his practice field and is inspired to befriend him. Soon, Radio is Jones’ loyal assistant, and principal Daniels (Alfre Woodard) happily notes that Radio’s self-confidence is skyrocketing. But things start to sour when Jones begins taking guff from fans who feel that his devotion to Radio is getting in the way of the team’s quest for a championship

What’s Eating Gilbert Grape Gilbert Grape (Johnny Depp) is a small-town young man with a lot of responsibility. Chief among his concerns are his mother (Darlene Cates), who is so overweight that she can’t leave the house, and his mentally impaired younger brother, Arnie (Leonardo DiCaprio), who has a knack for finding trouble. Settled into a job at a grocery store and an ongoing affair with local woman Betty Carver (Mary Steenburgen), Gilbert finally has his life shaken up by the free-spirited Becky (Juliette Lewis)


Reading Level:  YA

Bus Girl by Gretchen Josephson

Reading Level:  JF

My Sister Annie by Bill Dodds

Reading Level:  AC

Be Good to Eddie Lee  by Virginia FilIing

Big Brother Dustin by Alden R. Carter

Russ and the Apple Tree Surprise by Janet Elizabeth Rickert

Reading Level:  JE

Buddy’s Shadow by Shirley Becker

Charlsie’s Chuckle by Clara Widess Berkus

Cookie by Linda Kneeland

Thumbs Up, Rico! by Maria Testa

We’ll Paint the Octopus Red by Stephanie Stuve-Bodeen

Where’s Chimpy? by Berniece Rabe

Learning Disabilities


Eye to Eye: Mentoring Program “Eye to Eye is the only national LD / ADHD movement dedicated to mentoring. But we do much more to reach many more people with our message. In addition to our core mentor/mentee relationships, Eye to Eye brings people together both inside and outside the LD / ADHD community with our Diplomat, summer camp, and Alumni programs. We’re not just totally changing lives — we’re totally changing the conversation about LD / ADHD.”


I Can’t Do This But I Can Do That: (HBO Documentary) Four children with learning differences speaking about how they felt before and how they feel now that they are more confident about their disability thanks to adaptive technology/people knowing that they have a disability.


Reading Level:  A

The Doctor He Begged to Be by A. McDonald Vaz

Reading Level:  YA

Dyslexia My Life: One Man’s Story of His Life with a Learning Disability by Girard J. Sagmiller

Emily in Love by Susan Goldman Rubin

Probably Still Nick Swansen by Virginia Euwer Wolff

Reach for the Moon by Samantha Abeel

The Worst Speller in Jr. High by Caroline Janover

Reading Level:  JF

A Gebra Named Al by Wendy Isdell

How Dyslexic Benny Became a Star: A Story of Hope for Dyslexic Children and Their Parents by Joe Griffith

How Many Days Until Tomorrow? By Caroline Janover

Learning Disabilities and the Don’t Give Up Kid by Jeanne Gehret

My Name Is Brain Brian by Jeanne Betancourt

Trouble with School: A Family Story About Learning Disabilities by Kathryn Boesel Dunn and Allison Boesel Dunn

Reading Level:  AC

Leo the Late Bloomer by Robert Kraus



Leaving Evidence Mia Mingus is a writer, educator and community organizer for disability justice and transformative justice. She is a queer physically disabled korean transracial and transnational adoptee raised in the Carribean.


Aimee Mullins: The Opportunity of Adversity TEDTalk about an athlete, actress, model and world record-breaker in Paralympic Games in 1996. She was the first double amputee to compete in Division 1 Track and Field gives a talk about her experiences.

Friday Night Lights TV show that follows a high school senior with spinal cord injury in first episode. Chronicles the injury, the rehabilitation and recovery, adapted sport teams, the sexual encounters/questions that come along with paralyzing injury.

Push Girls-TV show that focuses on four friends who use wheelchairs and how they live in LA..

Coming Home The wife of a Marine serving in Vietnam, Sally Hyde (Jane Fonda) decides to volunteer at a local veterans hospital to occupy her time. There she meets Luke Martin (Jon Voight), a frustrated vet who uses a wheelchair and who has become disillusioned with the war. Sally and Luke develop a friendship that soon turns into a romance, but when her husband, Bob (Bruce Dern), returns unexpectedly, she must decide between staying with him and pursuing her new love.

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly Jean-Dominique Bauby (Mathieu Amalric), editor-in-chief of French fashion bible Elle magazine, has a devastating stroke at age 43. The damage to his brain stem results in locked-in syndrome, with which he is almost completely paralyzed and only able to communicate by blinking an eye. Bauby painstakingly dictates his memoir via the only means of expression left to him

The Intouchables An unlikely friendship develops between a wealthy quadriplegic (François Cluzet) and his caretaker (Omar Sy), just released from prison

Langer Gang In a rehabilitation center in Germany, a group of people suffering from various disabilities explore relationships with one another. Nesrin (Nina Kunzendorf) is a paraplegic, who uses a wheelchair at all times. Didi (Dieter Resch) suffers from dwarfism and atrophy of his arms, but is still able to play the drums and paint with his feet. Didi romances Nesrin, who struggles with her family’s traditional values. Didi’s carefree ways soon threaten to get him in trouble.

Music Within After a confrontation with one of his idols dashes his dreams of studying public speaking in college, Richard Pimentel (Ron Livingston) joins the Army and ships off to Vietnam. During his service, Richard loses nearly all of his hearing. Joining a new circle of friends, including a man with cerebral palsy and an alcoholic war veteran, Richard discovers his gift for motivational speaking and becomes an advocate for people with disabilities.

Musical Chairs A handyman (E.J. Bonilla) helps a former dancer (Leah Pipes) prepare for a wheelchair ballroom-dancing competition

Passion Fish After soap opera actress May-Alice Culhane (Mary McDonnell) has a car accident, she is paralyzed and forced into a wheelchair. She retreats to her family’s vacant home in Louisiana and indulges in alcohol and self-pity. When nursing aides come to help, May-Alice unleashes her anger, prompting each to quit. Chantelle (Alfre Woodard), a nurse who desperately needs the job, arrives determined to change May-Alice’s outlook. As the two women become friends, they help each other cope with challenges

Pumpkin Carolyn’s (Christina Ricci) sorority sisters set their sights on the Sorority of the Year award and coaching challenged athletes is their ticket to the trophy. But when the queen of formals finds herself mentoring Pumpkin (Hank Harris), a disabled athlete, their two worlds collide.

Quid Pro Quo A paraplegic (Nick Stahl) meets a mysterious woman (Vera Farmiga) who wants to be confined to a wheelchair.

Rory O’Shea Was Here In a Dublin home for the disabled, Michael Connolly (Steven Robertson) leads a glum, introverted existence; his cerebral palsy makes it difficult for anyone to understand his speech. But everything changes when Rory O’Shea (James McAvoy) enters his life. Although muscular dystrophy limits Rory to a wheelchair, he has the wild, carefree attitude that Michael lacks. Together, they make an unstoppable team — eventually landing their own apartment and a beautiful assistant (Romola Garai).

Rust and Bone Ali (Matthias Schoenaerts), a former boxer and single father, meets Stephanie (Marion Cotillard) when he saves her from a brawl at the nightclub where he works as a bouncer. Their casual acquaintance develops into something much more after Stephanie, who trains killer whales at a marine park, suffers a horrible accident and loses both her legs above the knee. As Stephanie draws on Ali’s physical strength, an unexpected courtship slowly comes to life.

The Waterdance Injured in a climbing accident, writer Joel Garcia (Eric Stoltz) wakes up in a hospital having lost the use of his legs. Soon after, he’s placed in a recovery ward where he begins the arduous process of rehabilitation and meets others with injuries like his own. Raymond (Wesley Snipes) is a ladies’ man whose girl has nevertheless split, and Bloss (William Forsythe) is a rather prejudiced biker. Together, this unlikely trio helps one another to overcome the greatest challenge of their lives.

Who are the DeBolts? The story of Dorothy and Bob DeBolt’s struggle to adopt and care for 19 children, with several of them being physically disabled war orphans


Reading Level:  A

*Strangers Assume my Girlfriend is My Nurse by Shane Burcow

Beauty is a Verb edited by Jennifer Bartlett, Sheila Black, and Michael Northen

The Me in the Mirror by Connie Panzarino

Under the Eye of the Clock: The Life Story of Christopher Nolan by Christopher Nolan

Reading Level:  YA

Best Friends by Hope Benton

Franklin D. Roosevelt: Gallant President by Barbara Feinberg

Iron Horse: Lou Gehrig in His Time by Ray Robinson

The Nautilus by Wanda Gilberts Kachur

Reading Level:  JF

Arlene On the Scene by Carol Liu and Marybeth Sidoti Caldarone

Hi, I’m Adam. A Child’s Story of Tourette Syndrome by Adam Buehrens

Margaret’s Moves by Bernice Rabe

Reading Level:  JE

Fair and Square by Nan Holcomb



Autistic Hoya blog from Lydia X. Z. Brown who does a lot of varied work in grassroots organizing, public policy advocacy, and writing focused on disability justice and intersectionality.

Cracked Mirror Savannah began formally advocating at the age of 12 when her mother asked her to sit on a panel for a state level conference presentation. Advocacy became a true passion for Savannah once she became an adult. Co-morbidly diagnosed GAD, PTSD, and ASD, she worked in Mental Health advocacy before she connected with the ASD and DD communities. In adulthood, she was diagnosed with several chronic health disabilities, some of which have a mild-to-moderate impact on mobility depending on the day.


Neurowonderful Hi I’m Amythest! I make videos about what it’s like to be Autistic. I talk about Autism, disability, and living life on the spectrum.

Adam-Adam Raki (Hugh Dancy), an electronics engineer, has an autism disorder called Asperger syndrome. When a young woman named Beth (Rose Byrne) moves into his apartment building, he is quite taken with her. She does not quite know how to react to Adam’s unconventional overtures but decides to give him a chance nonetheless. But Beth’s parents are apprehensive about her new romance, which could end the young lovers’ relationship before it has a chance.

As Good As it Gets Melvin Udall (Jack Nicholson) is an obsessive-compulsive writer of romantic fiction who’s rude to everyone he meets, including his gay neighbor Simon (Greg Kinnear), but when he has to look after Simon’s dog, he begins to soften and, if still not completely over his problems, finds he can conduct a relationship with the only waitress (Helen Hunt) at the local diner who’ll serve him.

Autism: The Musical Originating in Los Angeles, “Autism: The Musical” is a 2007 documentary that follows the lives of five autistic children who write and perform their own musical. The film also follows the parents of the five, and reveals the intense personal struggles and challenges of raising children with autism. The parents in the film include well known figures like Rosanne Katon-Walden, a former Playboy model, and musician Steven Stills of the band Crosby, Stills and Nash.

A Beautiful Mind A human drama inspired by events in the life of John Forbes Nash Jr., and in part based on the biography “A Beautiful Mind” by Sylvia Nasar. From the heights of notoriety to the depths of depravity, John Forbes Nash Jr. experienced it all. A mathematical genius, he made an astonishing discovery early in his career and stood on the brink of international acclaim. But the handsome and arrogant Nash soon found himself on a painful and harrowing journey of self-discovery.

Benny & Joon Benny (Aidan Quinn), who cares for his mentally disturbed sister, Joon (Mary Stuart Masterson), also welcomes the eccentric Sam (Johnny Depp) into his home at Joon’s request. Sam entertains Joon while he dreams of a job at the video store. Once Benny realizes Joon and Sam have started a relationship, he kicks Sam out of the house. This leads to an altercation between brother and sister. Joon runs away with Sam, who soon realizes that she may need more support than he alone can provide

Blue Sky In the late 1950s, the U.S. Army assigns nuclear engineer Hank Marshall (Tommy Lee Jones) to an isolated weapons testing facility in Alabama. Hank causes waves with his superior officers due to his stance against the atmospheric testing of nuclear weapons. Marshall’s wife, Carly (Jessica Lange), further aggravates the situation because of her emotional instability and flirtatious nature. The move to Alabama sends her into the arms of base commander Vince Johnson (Powers Boothe)

Canvas In a small coastal town, contractor John Marino (Joe Pantoliano) struggles to understand his wife, Mary (Marcia Gay Harden), when she starts behaving strangely. After a doctor’s visit, they discover she has schizophrenia. Nothing the doctors do helps, however, so John must live with his wife’s incurable mental illness, while also helping their confused child Chris (Devon Gearhart) make sense of it. But as Mary’s mental state declines, John finds an unexpected source of comfort in his son

David’s Mother A woman (Kirstie Alley) estranged from her husband and family insists on caring for her autistic son alone.

Girl, Interrupted Set in the changing world of the late 1960s, “Girl, Interrupted” is the searing true story of Susanna Kaysen (Winona Ryder), a young woman who finds herself at a renowned mental institution for troubled young women, where she must choose between the world of people who belong on the inside — like the seductive and dangerous Lisa (Angelina Jolie) — or the often difficult world of reality on the outside

It’s Kind of a Funny Story Stressed by adolescence, 16-year-old Craig Gilner (Keir Gilchrist) checks himself into a mental-health clinic. Unfortunately, the youth wing is closed, so he must spend his mandated five-day stay with adults. One of them, Bobby (Zach Galifianakis), quickly becomes his mentor — and protege, while Craig finds himself drawn to a fellow teen, Noelle (Emma Roberts), who just may be the cure he needs to forget an unrequited crush

The Loretta Claiborne Story Gutsy Loretta Clairborne (Kimberly Elise), born with mental and physical disabilities, realizes at an early age that she’s a talented athlete. Always able to stick up for herself, Loretta is thrown out of school after a fight, but, urged on by her mother (Tina Lifford) and a devoted social worker (Camryn Manheim), she runs in Special Olympics meets and the Boston Marathon. Loretta’s resolve is tested again when her mother becomes seriously ill and her own health requires attention.

Mary and Max A lonely Australian girl (Toni Collette) and an elderly Jewish man (Philip Seymour Hoffman) in New York develop an unlikely friendship through letters.

Mozart and the Whale New York taxi driver Donald Morton (Josh Hartnett) has Asperger’s syndrome, a type of autism. Proficient with numbers but shy around people, Donald organizes a support group for others with with his condition. Isabelle Sorenson (Radha Mitchell), who is direct to a fault and practical, but easily upset by any perceived insult, joins the group. The two fall in love, but their mutual difficulty in coping with their condition threatens their fragile relationship

My Name is Khan A mildly autistic man (Shah Rukh Khan) travels across the U.S. to meet President Obama.

Ordinary People Tormented by guilt following the death of his older brother, Buck, in a sailing accident, alienated teenager Conrad Jarrett (Timothy Hutton) attempts suicide. Returning home following an extended stay in a psychiatric hospital, Conrad tries to deal with his mental anguish and also reconnect with his mother, Beth (Mary Tyler Moore), who has grown cold and angry, and his emotionally wounded father, Calvin (Donald Sutherland), with the help of his psychiatrist, Dr. Berger (Judd Hirsch)

The Soloist Los Angeles columnist Steve Lopez (Robert Downey Jr.) has reached an impasse in his life. His marriage is on the rocks, and he’s disillusioned with his job. Then, while wandering through L.A.’s Skid Row, he spots a homeless man (Jamie Foxx) playing a two-stringed violin with a virtuoso’s skill. Lopez initially thinks of the man, named Nathaniel Ayers, as just a story idea. But as he begins to unravel the mystery of Ayers’ strange fate, Lopez realizes that a change is happening within himself.

Snow Cake Traveling through Canada, ex-con Alex Hughes (Alan Rickman) picks up a vivacious young hitchhiker, Vivienne (Emily Hampshire), who needs a ride to her hometown. Soon afterward, the pair are involved in a horrible car accident that kills Vivienne. Alex continues on to her home to tell Vivienne’s mother (Sigourney Weaver) about her fate. Later he begins an affair with a neighbor (Carrie-Anne Moss) who paves the way for his healing.



Reading Level:  A

Neurotribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity by Steve Silberman

Tears of a Warrior by Janet J. Seahorn, E. Anthony Seahorn

Blood Letting: A Memoir of Secrets, Self-Harm, and Survival by Victoria Leatham

**Look Me in the Eye: My Life with Asperger’s by John Elder Robison

Thinking in Pictures by Temple Grandin

Reading Level:  JE

Joey and Sam by Illana Katz and Edward Ritvo

Reading Level:  AC

Andy and His Yellow Frisbee by Mary Thompson

Ian’s Walk: A Story About Autism by Laurie Lears



The King’s Speech England’s Prince Albert (Colin Firth) must ascend the throne as King George VI, but he has a speech impediment. Knowing that the country needs her husband to be able to communicate effectively, Elizabeth (Helena Bonham Carter) hires Lionel Logue (Geoffrey Rush), an Australian actor and speech therapist, to help him overcome his stammer. An extraordinary friendship develops between the two men, as Logue uses unconventional means to teach the monarch how to speak with confidence.


Reading Level:  JE

The Bob (Butterbean) Love Story by Terry Page and Bob Love

Reading Level:  AC

Armann and Gentle by Kristin Steinsdottir

Cat’s Got Your Tongue? by Charles E. Schaefer

Systemic/Medical Disabilities


Control-A profile of Ian Curtis, the enigmatic singer of Joy Division whose personal, professional, and romantic troubles led him to commit suicide at the age of 23.

The Mighty “This tells the story of a strong friendship between a young boy with Morquio’s syndrome and an older boy who is always bullied because of his size. Adapted from the novel, Freak the Mighty, the film explores a building of trust and friendship. Kevin, an intelligent guy helps out Maxwell to improve his reading skills. In return, Kevin wants Maxwell to take him out places since he is not allowed out unauthorized. Being the social outcasts of the town, Kevin and Maxwell come to realize that they are similar to each other and accept that they are “freaks” and nothing will stop them.” 

My Sister’s Keeper Conceived as a marrow donor for her gravely ill sister, Anna Fitzgerald (Abigail Breslin) has undergone countless surgeries and medical procedures in her short life. Though their older daughter’s life has no doubt been prolonged, the unorthodox decision of Anna’s parents has cracked the entire family’s foundation. When Anna sues her parents for emancipation, it sets off a court case that threatens to destroy the family for good.

First Do No Harm The true story of one woman’s struggle against a narrow-minded medical establishment.


Reading Levels: A

Too Late to Die Young: Nearly True Tales from a Life by Harriet McBryde Johnson

Reading Level:  JE

Anna Joins In by Katrina Arnold

Little Tree: A Story for Children with Serious Medical Problems by Joyce C. Mills

Sarah and Puffle: A Story for Children About Diabetes by Linnea Mulder

What About Me? When Brothers and Sisters Get Sick by Allan Peterkin

Reading Level:  AC

The Rabbit with Epilepsy by Deborah M. Moss

Luke Has Asthma, Too by Alison Rogers

You Can Call Me Willy: A Story for Children About AIDS by Joan C. Verniero