Essay Sample about People with Disabilities in the Tribes Play

Published: 2022-05-18
Essay Sample about People with Disabilities in the Tribes Play
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Discrimination Diversity
Pages: 3
Wordcount: 687 words
6 min read

'Tribes' is a controversial family play based on a typical family setting where the characters promote isolation and confusion among them. The society in which we live in expects to live a life where there are no interferences and disability among them becomes a burden. In this case, Billy who is deaf is the burden and is forced to adapt to this setting by learning sign language all by himself. Billy remains adapted to this unconventional environment brilliantly, not until he meets Sylvia, a bold young woman who is deaf and on the brink of breaking away from this idiosyncratic cocoon. In this essay, I will be discussing how people with disabilities are usually stigmatized by being viewed as inferior human beings and how they can be able to break away from these socially incorrect cocoons.

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Are People With Disabilities Gendered Differently?

Unfortunately, the society we live in generally take disability for a burden and provide care to these individuals on when they think it is necessary to do so. It's only in the last few years that deaf people with support from a few sensical normal hearing people have come out and presented the need for them to be recognized as other people are in the society by being given equal opportunities. However, this is not the case today, and the society expects them to conquer their problems all by themselves. In the play, the rest of Billy's family completely ignores him not only in their conversations but also in their daily day activities. This confirms how disabled people are treated as inferiors which greatly affect these people and their life in general.

Are People With Disabilities Viewed as Asexual and Feminine?

Generally, in the society we live in, people with disabilities are not treated as other human beings. They are seen to be lesser in one way or another and majority of them suffer from stigmatization which makes their lives very challenging and stressful. Majority of them live a lonely life as no one wants to be associated with them in one way or another. They are neglected and left to live alone either in a secluded place with no compassionate care. However, some of these individuals break themselves out of these unfortunate situations, conquer all odds and find love, either from the hearing people who have no problem with their impairment or from their impaired counterparts. Some of these people come out of this very joyous in contented relationships which build families that despite the joy, there are still challenges brought about by these disabilities.

For instance, in the play, Billy's world is opened up when he met Sylvia and quickly realizes how his family has sheltered him in the deaf world. In their attempt to make him feel like one of them, a paradox arises where he instead feels that they have made it impossible for him to own and take pride in his disability. Sylvia introduces him to the deaf community by teaching him sign language which henceforth gives Billy a new sense of belonging, family, and community.

Is Disability Viewed as Being Non-masculine?

According to study, masculinity and disability have and continued to conflict with each other where gender and disability intersect. With masculinity being associated with power and autonomy, disability, on the other hand, feels helpless and dependent thus creating an embodied dilemma for impaired men. However, as shown in the case of Billy, it is possible to overcome these stereotypes and prove the doubts that disability is not inability. According to Nina Raines, the feeling of belonging and family does not exist for people living with disabilities. The society we live in is harmful to these people, and intervention measures need to be put in place to accommodate everyone despite our differences.

Works Cited

"Deafness in Society2." | University of Bristol,

Nick Hern Books, Nina R. "Tribes - Drama Online." Home - Drama Online,

Raine, Nina. "Tribes." Tribes, 14 Oct. 2010, p. 8.

"Tribes (Play) Plot & Characters." StageAgent,

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