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Deafness A A Culture Essay

654 words - 3 pages

Deafness as Culture

In this article, by Edward Dolnick, it is made clear the view points of the Deaf community toward medical procedures “curing” there lost hearing. The Deaf community is strongly knitted together supporting one another and helping each other to communicate with others outside the community who isn’t deaf. I liked how they said Deafness is not a disability but a subculture. This statement really signifies there union as a community and culture.
The significance between the terms “deaf” and “Deaf” is that the upper case D is significant that the “deaf share a culture rather than merely a medical condition.” In the article it states many deaf parents cheer on having a deaf child just like any hearing parent would cheer on having a hearing child. The Deaf society have a strong pride in themselves and being deaf and do not want to change that feature about them ever even if there was a procedure. That is why ...view middle of the document...

Mainstreaming is when they throw someone with special needs into a “regular” class and are taught with others who don’t share the same need as them. The Deaf communities have a problem with mainstreaming because they feel it doesn’t allow the child to grow in education because of not being able to communicate but also the lack of communism that goes along with it. In the article it says putting deaf children in regular public schools will produce “a new generation of educational failures.” They also state that it will also imprison deaf children “in a zone of silence” even from well-meaning attempts. The Deaf community did come up with three different ways to communicate while integrating English and they are: cued speech, total communication, and bilingualism. Cued speech advantages include distinguishing similar words that look alike from lip reading, easy to learn only talking a twenty hours or so, English speaking parents can bypass useless beginning phrases, and nothing has to be lost in translation. The disadvantages of cued speech include parents need to learn ASL which could take months or even years to learn and cued speech users can only communicate with other cued speech users and won’t be able to order food or talk to someone on the street who doesn’t know cued speech. Total communication advantages are that teachers can speak, write, ASL, and use finger spelling to teach children but a big disadvantage is that most say it is unworkable because a teacher can’t speak in English and simultaneously ASL the same exact message. Bilingualism advantages include learning ASL first which will focus more on the writing and reading part of English instead of speaking which is very time consuming. The disadvantages of bilingualism is that ASL has no written form and there for many deaf people cannot read books and are anti-book.
Essentially, the Deaf community is very inspiring in accepting who you are and not letting others tell you are different or can’t learn like people who can hear because there are many ways for a deaf person to learn to communicate with others and establish connections with other cultures and there own culture as well.

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