Women in Special Ed: Nellie Bly

Nellie Bly |A rabble rouser at heart, Nellie Bly is most commonly remembered for her daring trip around the globe in only 72 days. However, at a time where women weren’t necessarily welcome in journalism, Nellie had to make a name for herself before she was invited to write for any of the big players in print journalism. For her first mission, Nelly disguised herself as a person with a cognitive disability and went undercover at an insane asylum. She took extensive notes about the way she and the other residents were treated, the reasons (of lack thereof) why they were admitted, and the miserable living conditions. Her jaw-dropping expose lead to widespread reforms for homes for adults with disabilities, including stricter legislation and an overall societal change in the way we view people with handicaps.

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