Arizona Journalist's Project 'Wordslaw' Provides Those With Developmental Disabilities A Stage To Share Their Stories

By Lauren Gilger
Published: Friday, June 4, 2021 - 11:54am
Updated: Friday, June 4, 2021 - 2:35pm

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madison latham and matt hoie
Amy Silverman
Madison Latham records Matt Hoie, a reader at one of the Wordslaw events.

Journalist Amy Silverman has dedicated much of her career to writing about people with intellectual and developmental disabilities — including a 2016 book, "My Heart Can't Even Believe It," she wrote about her daughter, Sophie, who has Down syndrome.

She also has been a catalyst in curating live storytelling in the Valley with events like Barflies and its several offshoots.

Now, she’s bringing those two things together as part of her project for a visiting fellowship at the Nieman Foundation at Harvard. It’s called Wordslaw, and it gives people with intellectual and developmental disabilities a stage where they can tell their own stories.

The Show spoke with Amy for more about how it all got started.

The first edition of Wordslaw will take place on June 7. It’s virtual, free and you can register and get more information at

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