“I will never find home on the mountain.” (Clare 10). That sentence really stood out to me among the first chapter of Exile and Pride by Eli Clare. The first chapter of this book focuses on the metaphor of the mountain. The metaphor of the mountain in this chapter is described as the uphill battle that one faces to succeed. As Clare is disabled, the idea that “[he] will never find home on the mountain” (10) becomes more powerful.
There are many struggles that people that are able bodied will never understand in regards to succeeding in life. The disabled community will always face synonyms such as incompetent and unable. Society is determined to tear down the disabled and limit any sense of direction that they could have in their life. In other words, Clare is right; the disabled will never find home on the mountain. Society makes damn sure of that by crushing the hopes of the disabled.
Clare also references his queerness as a reason for why “[he] will never find home on the mountain” (10). On one hand, I understand where he is coming from. Queer communities often face discrimination in daily life, as well as the workplace specifically. If we maintain that the mountain is a symbol towards success, then it is easy to see how homophobia may limit the success of a queer individual. But, I believe that his disabilities play a bigger role in shaping his ability to find a home on the mountain, somewhere where he can succeed.