Able to Lead: Disablement, Radicalism, and the Political Life of E.T. Kingsley, Ravi Malhotra and Benjamin Isitt

Book Review by Janet Nicol

Eugene Thornton Kingsley, an influential socialist in early British Columbia, was 33 years old when he adopted his revolutionary stance.  Employed as a brakeman on a railway in rural Montana in 1890, he fell between two moving train cars and lost both legs.  During a lengthy recovery in hospital, Kingsley read the books of Karl Marx.  After his discharge, he returned home to his wife and two young sons equipped with a pair of wooden prosthesis and a cane.  Two years later Kingsley inexplicably left his family and moved to California.  Authors Ravi Malhotra, a disability rights and law professor, and Benjamin Isitt, a historian, examine Kingsley’s ensuing activism through the lens of ableism, law, and the socialist movement.

So begins this review of a remarkable British Columbian. Full review available on line at BC Studies and at a later date, in the BC Studies print edition. (Link below)

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