Welcome to The Cyborg Circus Show: Imagining Disability Futures Beyond Normative Bodies A Manifesto


  • Shay Erlich


The Cyborg Circus Show is an exercise in juxtapositions and possibilities peeking through the horizon. It is an in-depth exploration of what it means to be human and how there can be more that unites posthuman bodies than divides them. It is a wholehearted embrace of the limitless possibilities present within the world of circus and the exuberant exploration of what can become when we create space for disabled people to explore the full potential of their bodies through circus. The Cyborg Circus Show is an exploration of joy and wonder, the thrill of effort for disabled bodies existing in stark contrast to a limited world outside the circus tent. This paper explores the ethos of the Cyborg Circus Show and the multiple possibilities that open for exploration when we create a circus world that welcomes disabled circus performers and embraces what can be possible when working with bodily limitations. 

Author Biography

Shay Erlich

Shay Erlich is a hard of hearing, multiply disabled, and genderqueer child and youth care practitioner and circus artist. Shay holds a master's degree in child and youth care from Ryerson University, and their recent thesis project explored how social circus can be understood as child and youth care practice. 






Is Social Circus the Other of Professional Circus? (Section Editor: David Fancy, Brock University)