Understanding Deaf Culture: In Search of Deafhood
This book presents a ‘Traveller’s Guide’ to Deaf Culture, starting from the premise that Deaf cultures have an important contribution to make to other academic disciplines, and human lives in general. Within and outside Deaf communities, there is a need for an account of the new concept of Deaf culture, which enables readers to assess its place alongside work on other minority cultures and multilingual discourses. The book aims to assess the concepts of culture, on their own terms and in their many guises and to apply these to Deaf communities. The author illustrates the pitfalls which have been created for those communities by the medical concept of ‘deafness’ and contrasts this with his new concept of “Deafhood”, a process by which every Deaf child, family and adult implicitly explains their existence in the world to themselves and each other.
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Many of the terms and abbreviations used in this study are explained within the
text. Comprehension, however, will be easier if some are clarified from the start.
These are grouped thematically rather than alphabetically for easier assimilation.
Williams identifies five senses of the use of the term community. Three are
geographically based, but two, 'the quality of holding something in common, as in
community of interests', and 'a particular quality of relationship (as in communitas
We should also note the slippage that takes place between the use of 'Deaf
community' as referring to one nation, and its use as an international term of
reference. Although ideally one should use the full phrase 'International Deaf
Present-day ideologies concerning Deaf people are characterised by the term '
deafness'. Recently there has been dissatisfaction in some quarters of the Deaf
community with this term (Bienvenu, 1991; Moore & Levitan, 1992), since the
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He has explained about the journey of being Deaf and understanding what Deaf culture is all about. It's a great book. Wordy or not, he's from England which is why he helped us to be aware about Deafhood.
Twentieth Century Discourses
Culture Definitions and Theories
Discourses and Definitions
Researching Deaf Communities Subaltern Researcher
Deaf Clubs and Deaf Subalterns
Subaltern Rebels and Deafhood National Dimensions
Conclusions and Implications