Saturday, March 29, 2008

The "Fat" Challenge ... With a Prize and Everything

Yesterday Dr. Darlene McLaughlin was in Toronto doing a lecture for the Vita Master's Series. One of my jobs is to create a 'pre lecture' show that plays as people are arriving and during lunch. This is the fourth time that I've done a 'quiz' as part of that show. The quizzes are always about disability and media. Here are the most recent ten questions. But, a difference, the first person to get all ten right, will be able to choose a book, authored by me alone (I can't give away someone else's work) which will be signed and sent off to you where ever you are in the world. So, good luck ... these are, I should warn you, the hardest questions I've come up with. Go ahead and browse for prizes at Those who were there at the conference where the answers were posted are, of course, exempted from the contest.

Disability Goes to the Movies

Question 1

In what year did the first movie with a character with an intellectual disability get made?





Question 2

The life of Derek Bartly, a man with an intellectual disability, was dramatized in the 1991 movie ‘Let Him Have It.’ Bartly's life led to a significant social change in England with repercussions in Canada and throughout the British Empire … that change was:

The founding of the Special Olympics World Games

The establishment of the principle of full work for full pay for people with disabilities

The abolition of the death penalty

The abolition of marriage laws forbidding the marriage of people with disabilities

Question 3

Charlie Chaplin is remembered as a comedian but he wrote most of his own films. In one of his most famous film his character ‘the tramp’ befriends a blind flower girl and attempts to restore her sight. What was the name of this film?

City Lights

At The Races

The Flower Girl


Question 4

The film ‘Johnny Belinda’ featured a young girl, known as the town ‘dummy’ who is deaf. The film was set in what Canadian province?


British Columbia

Nova Scotia


Question 5

Chris Burke, an actor with Down Syndrome, is well known for the series “Life Goes On” but he also was a featured player in what other television programme?

The Young and the Restless



Touched by An Angel

Question 6

Moulin Rouge features the real life character of Toulouse-Lautrec, he is portrayed by an actor who is on his knees in close ups and by a dwarf in long shots. In reality, what was the source of his short stature.

He was a dwarf.

Both his parents were short.

A botched operation affected his growth pattern

His height is a historical myth, he was simply shorter than most.

Question 7

Love! Valour! Compassion was one of the first movies that featured almost entirely gay characters. One of the film’s characters had a disability … what was that disability?





Question 8

The Canadian animated series ‘Quads’ was based on the life of what famous person with a disability?

John Callahan

Christopher Reeve

Jason Jackman

Christy Brown

Question 9

Peter Sellers plays a man with an intellectual disability in the film ‘Being There’ … in that film what was the occupation of the character.

Shelf stocker


Grocery boy

Bike courier

Question 10

In “The Diving Bell and the Butterfly” the main character has a stroke to the brain stem, what was his occupation before the stroke left him with near total paralysis.






Anonymous said...

Hey Dave!

Hope these are right!

1.1939- Of mice and men
2. Abolation of the death penalty
3. City Lights
4.Nova Scotia
5.Touched By an angel
6.Historical Myth- inbreeding/ legs not healed properly after being broken
10. Editor in Chief of Elle

Woo-hoo, this was fun for a Sta mornign!! and informative too!
Michelle Barlwo

Anonymous said...

sorry in all my excited typing, I didn't check any spelling before I hit publish comment- that would be Sat morning and Barlow!!!

Anonymous said...

Hey again, My answers are:

1-1939 (Of Mice and Men)
2-The abolition of the death penalty
3-City Lights
4-Cape Breton Island in Far eastern Canada
5-Touched by An Angel
6-Broken hips and legs not healing properly
8-John Callahan

Traigh said...

Hi Dave I am certainly not going to win the prize as I have no idea what the answer might be to most of the questions.

I would suggest though that Freaks (1932) might be the first film to feature characters with learning difficulties - the microcephalics?

I think Derek Bentley (not Bartley) was the subject of the film "Let Him Have it". I do not know what social change his life led to though.

I look forward to the answers being revealed

Dave Hingsburger said...

Wow, that was fast, the prize will go to Gun, Michelle missed number 6. Gun send me your address and a pick of a book at Diverse City.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dave Hingsburger said...

Cathy,you are right, it was Derek Bently not Bartly, and for catching the typo, please pick a book and we'll send it to you as well.

Anonymous said...

YEY! :))

Wonderful, I will be looking forward to my personally autographed book. I 'll send my address to your email.

It was really fun, thanks.


Traigh said...

Thanks Dave that is very generous. Over here in the UK we say "no one likes a smart arse" so I certainly wasn't looking for a prize, especially as I could not answer the rest of the questions.

Also I live in the UK so the cost of postage would be prohibitive.

Hope to see you over here sometime soon. It's a few years since I last saw you here in Leeds. We still have the photo of us on the wall with the birthday muffin you gave us for Connect in the North's 10th birthday.

all the best


Dave Hingsburger said...

Cathy, I figured that I'd be sending internationally, so please do send your address and I'll send the book! I remember being there for the celebration well.

lina said...

Well! I thought I was an early riser - yep, up by 8 this morning, showered and coffee in hand by 9 - thought I would check out the ol' blog as I like to do - woo hoo a contest - I'm thinking I could get in on the action - you know, google my way through this!
Uh - two winners already's 9:45 - AM - it's Saturday morning - well, no worm for me - or book for that matter!
Great blog Dave!

Penny L. Richards said...

Hmm, if you can stand another smartypants quibble... I'm with Cathy, there are quite a number of pre-1939 films featuring characters with cognitive disabilities, including silent-era films. Now, the depictions aren't (generally) kind or nuanced or realistic or central to the plot, but they're out there anyway. Some candidates from a troll through IMDb:

1938: Goodbye Broadway (the "village idiot" Iradius P Oglethorpe sells the main characters worthless furniture as "antiques")

1937: The Impractical Joker (a comedy featuring "Irving the Imbecile Idiot" as the title character--now there's a character name well consigned to the past!)

1936: Le Mort (Belgian film based on a novel, in which the "idiot" brother is the only one left standing in a crime scheme gone wrong)

There seem to be quite a few Bollywood pictures from the 1920s-30s, in which an "idiot" suitor is rejected by a young woman, only to prove that he's the purest of heart and most heroic of her choices; or, in another plot twist, that he's got a secret fortune, so his simplicity isn't such an obstacle, in the logic of the genre:
Kelo(r) Kirti (1928):
Indira M. A. (1934):
Now that would be a fun research project, disability and romance in early Bollywood films...

theknapper said...

And did you get these questions from the book I gave you(Cinema of Isolation?!!!)
Great idea. We need to know this stuff.

Anonymous said...

I hope you can join us on in our community: "Support People with Disabilities"

Will H.

Dave Hingsburger said...

Yes, knapper, I did use that book, along with an internet search. Clearly I didn't search well enough for question number one, but still, it was fun. I agree, we need to know this stuff. Thanks again for the book, I've referred to it often.

Anonymous said...

Can I use some of these questions in a Trivia Night our Down syndrome group is hosting next month?

Anjie (mom to Adam, 5, & his big sisters)

Dave Hingsburger said...

Of course you can, I wouldn't use question 1 because I got that one wrong but all the rest are fair game.