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  • Print publication year: 2020
  • Online publication date: April 2020

16 - Judicial Representation: Speaking for Others from the Bench

from Part V - Disability, Intersectionality, and Social Movements


Being represented has value. When another speaks for me, they can give voice to my perspective or interests in fora where my perspective or interests might otherwise go unheard or even unspoken. They may give voice to interests which I do not know how to express or which I do not even know I have. Our traditional understanding of political representation is that it is an activity that takes place only or mostly in discrete and easily recognizable legislative fora – for instance, the Senate or the House of Representatives. But, if we instead think of political representation as a practice of speaking or acting for others that could, in theory, arise anywhere a person’s or a group’s interests arise, then it turns out that political representation may take place anywhere there is a speaker or an actor and an audience.