These churches include the Pilgrim Lutheran Church of the Deaf, International Deaf Mission, Los Angeles Deaf Church., Holy Angeles Catholic Church of the Deaf and the Grace Bible Church of the Deaf, to mention a few. There is also a presence of the Jewish deaf community. When it comes to education, the Los Angeles area has a sizable program at the California State University Northridge with a National Center on Deafness. As a region, California has several schools for the deaf with both oral and signing or total communication. There is also a program for the deaf and hard of hearing program in the Los Angeles Unified School District. All these factors make Los Angeles and California as a whole a "deaf friendly" region for the deaf communities in it.
American Athletic Association of the Deaf
According to the USADSF, in 1945, the Akron Club of the Deaf in Ohio sponsored the first national basketball tournament at which time it established the American Athletic Union of the Deaf which was later renamed the American Athletic Association of the Deaf ("About USADSF"). It was later renamed the U.S.A. Deaf Sports Federation or USADSF in 1997. This association mainly purposes to foster and regulate uniform competition rules as well as provide social outlets for deaf members and their friends. It also serves as a parent organization of national sports organizations, conduct annual athletic competitions and assist in the U.S. teams participation in international competitions. It is the only recognized national athletic association that coordinates the participation of American deaf and hard of hearing persons in international competitions. It is also affiliated with the International Committee of Sports for the Deaf (Stewart 74).
The deaf athletes are different from other athletes on the playing field by their loss of hearing and are all united on the USADSF's national teams by their virtue of experiences they share as well as the challenges they face. Former and current athletes act as ambassadors within the United States and around the world and serve as role models either actively or by example to the youths who are deaf and hard of hearing. Little interest is put in whether one is playing for a medal or not. More importance is put on ones dedication and on giving their best ("Athletes ").
The deaf and hard of hearing community, like any other community, has…… [Read More]
There is "evidence that deaf children benefit from early exposure to sign language points to the need for in-depth sign language training for parents and other caregivers, with special attention to underserved populations such as those in rural areas," (Marschuck 2001 p 9). Parents should not rely on external schools at later developmental stages, when the damage to the child's cognitive and linguistic abilities could have already been done.
Chomsky's Developmental Theory
In order to better understand how this issue is such a problem for the population of deaf children born to hearing parents, it is important to explore relevant theoretical models of language acquisition. According to Noam Chomsky's theory of language development, children have an innate ability to learn any form of human communication
(Macaulay 2006). We as human beings are essentially hard-wired to learn language skills and concepts. Here, the research states that "human beings are born with an innate knowledge of how language is structured and use this innate knowledge to work out how to acquire competence in the language to which they are exposed," (Macaulay 2006 p 54). Infants show similar language acquisition abilities despite cultural or regional differences because of the Language Acquisition Device (LAD) that Chomsky believed help facilitate language learning. Children do not learn language simply through imitation, but through a more complex process that is innately conducted cognitively. Thus, language acquisition is rapid because of these innate structures already in place (Macaulay 2006). Chomsky's theory takes an interesting twist when applied to children of deaf populations. One study (Goldin-Meadow & Mylander 1998), explored the language structures used by deaf children in the United States and in China. What the research discovered was that the compilation of language structures in hand-made gestures was incredibly similar, despite vast cultural and language differences. According to this study, "These striking similarities offer critical empirical input towards resolving the ongoing debate about the innateness of language in human infants," (Goldin-Meadow & Mylander 1998 p 279). This essentially serves as a testament to Chomsky's belief that children hold an innate ability to learn language in specific schemas, and that this ability transcends cultural differences (Spencer & Marschuck 2006). In fact, one of the greatest signs of hearing loss is when children do not talk at the level appropriate to their developmental stage (Mayberry 2002).
ASL…… [Read More]
Sign of Respect
In this video, the basic message is that as new signers we should act with the same level of respect that we use with the hearing, that is, if we do not understand, express this honestly.
Certainly, just as in the scene where someone such as Amy do not understand, answer b should always be our answer. However, beyond just expressing understanding or lack thereof as a sin of respect (or disrespect) to a deaf person is not enough. We must use this as a template for all of our interactions with the deaf community. Just as we would like the Golden Rule and the benefit of the doubt applied to us, we need to give the same consideration first so that we deserve to have it from the deaf.
If we treat the hearing impaired as if they are not aware, what does this say about ourselves and our manners? If we see this simply as an exercise in good manners, it will not be so difficult to see the hearing impaired community as anything other than normal people who deserve the same respect that we do in any situation where we may not have the same access to or level of communication in a data set as we might like to have.
There are more similarities than differences between the hearing impaired community and the hearing community. Just as they wish to have respect, they wish to have it just as much as we do. Indeed, a "handicap" is simply propelled by perception. If one has never heard, they have no idea that they are "behind" or "handicapped." Any situation is a double edged sword. It can go both ways.
Do those in the hearing impaired community have many of the experiences that happened between those in the video in the Deaf Community Center and someone who hears such as…… [Read More]
Deaf President Now!
"Deaf President Now!" summarized the student protests of March 1998, of the appointment the 7th hearing President of Gallaudet University.
This video was very moving; it showed students fervently campaigning for the removal of the newly appointed hearing President of Gallaudet University Mrs. Zinser. The Gallaudet community felt it was time to have a deaf President. The protest spanned nearly a week, there were no classes held as students took to the streets to protest the appointment Zinser. The Gallaudet community even went so far as to create mock dolls of Zinser and burn them in the streets. I doubt they wanted her dead but that was just how strongly they felt about her removal and the placement of a deaf person as President of the school. I wasn't shocked when the Board gave in to the students' demands. Zinser finally resigned making way for a deaf man to be appointed as President. Initially, thought the students were overreacting; but I begin to see parallels between the women's movement and the civil rights movement and realized that when women and minorities fought for equality, many people believed they too, were overreacting. I was reminded that you can't judge someone, because you don't understand what it is like to walk a mile in their shoes. The appointment of a deaf President to the students would have legitimize deaf people, without a deaf President the message was sent that deaf people somehow weren't good enough to be leaders. But as a little boy pointed out in the video that having a hearing President didn't adequately serve the deaf community at Gallaudet since a hearing President could never "share the same experience" as a deaf person.
The questions I have after watching this video are:
What happened to Zinser after she resigned?
What happened to the first hearing President, Dr. Jordan? Where is he now?
I was able to locate information or Dr. Jordan. Dr. I. King Jordan, Gallaudet's first deaf President served as President from 1998-2006, he resigned in 2006. He currently serves on the Commission on Presidential Scholars. He was appointed by President Obama and is an international renowned speaker. Dr. Jordan also…… [Read More]
Deaf individuality itself is highly valued in the Deaf community. Members seem to concur that hearing people can never completely obtain that identity and become an experienced member of the deaf community. Even with deaf parents and a native grasp of ASL the hearing person will have missed the familiarity of growing up deaf, including residential school. For a lot of members of the deaf community, speech and thinking like a hearing person are pessimistically valued in Deaf Culture (What is Deaf Culture, 2011).
Residential schools provide a very important link in the communication of Deaf Culture and Language. Children here are capable to communicate in a language willingly understood by each other. Deaf children are capable to partake in social clubs, sports and appreciably enough, to be around deaf role models. It is important for deaf children to be hopeful to further their education and to learn that deafness does not mean that they cannot grow up to be victorious and contented. Success of course being at each persons own viewpoint on what success and happiness means to them personally. This is not to say that conventional education is iniquitous for deaf children, but one must keep in mind that socialization is indispensable to a child's growth and with no common language socialization is restricted (Deaf Culture, 2011).
In the Deaf Culture to be deaf in actions, principles, knowledge, and fluency in ASL is seen as a positive thing. Deafness is not a disability but rather a special way of being. Nevertheless, it must be noted that not all members of the deaf community share the same principles of those deaf who support Deaf culture. Even though a deaf person may sign, that by itself does not mean they follow Deaf culture or the attitude of that Culture, remember that Deaf culture is a characteristic. Each Deaf person is unique and views may be different. "This may be due…… [Read More]
There has been a dearth of literature on the training and development of deaf and hard of hearing employees. This research attempts to highlight gaps in the research and suggest methods of improving deaf awareness in the fields of human resources and organizational development. The Americans With Disabilities Act requires all organizations to make reasonable accommodations to the workplace environment, policy, and procedure for deaf and hard of hearing employees. This applies to employee training and development as well as daily functionality on the job. Because six to nine percent of the population identifies as deaf or hard of hearing, it is critical for organizations to adapt their training and employee development programs to attract and retain deaf employees (Hersh, 2012).
To create effective training and development programs, it is important that human resources managers and staff understand best practices in adapting the workplace and making accommodations. The adaptation of all training and development programs requires respect, personalization, investment in consultation services, and the skillful use of technological tools. Both the design and application of training materials needs to change to properly accommodate the needs of deaf and hard of hearing employees, to fulfill not only the ethical policies of the organization but also the legal requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Review of Literature
Unsurprisingly, the needs of deaf and hard of hearing employees are not being met adequately in spite of the Americans With Disabilities Act stipulations. Haynes & Linden (2012) found that only half of deaf employees surveyed were satisfied with the accommodations being used in the workplace. According to Haynes & Linden (2012), the most common unmet needs were effective communication in groups and lack of co-worker support (p. 408). Common complaints from the deaf community related to perceived human resources and development weaknesses include poorly designed environments, poorly designed training materials, ineffective communication, lack of support from coworkers, and generalized "unmet needs," (Haynes & Linden, 2012). Impatience and being isolated are also among the most common experiences of deaf and hard of hearing trainees (Shaw, 2012).
A small…… [Read More]
Equally destructive is the attitude that communicating with the Deaf person may involve more time and effort than one wishes to expend" (Zieziula, 1998, p. 193).
Moreover, and perhaps one of the most important challenges related to this issue, a large percentage of deaf individuals do not trust the hearing society. "Historically, the dominant hearing culture has relegated deaf people to social categories such as "handicapped" and "outsider." The history of oppression and exclusion of the deaf community -- although with important variations depending on the countries -- and the ignorance and rejection of the natural and preferred means of communication of many of them is a well-known and many times denounced phenomenon," (Munoz-Baell & Ruiz, 1999, p. 1).
Finally, there is a real deficiency of information in Deaf culture regarding hospice and its related services. Finding appropriate facilities can be a time-consuming and frustrating process.
The program: breaking down barriers
The purpose of this program is to meet the challenges stated above by providing hospice services that cater to the unique needs of deaf individuals. This will be accomplished through the use of educational classes and workshops provided in churches and community centers. Deaf persons skilled in ASL will be trained as volunteers and must be available on call when a deaf patient is admitted to the facility. Only those individuals with a high level of signing skills will be accepted. The volunteers will also be asked to accompany the patient to doctor visits as well as make needed home or hospital visits. However, volunteers will not replace certified interpreters who accompany the patient on office and doctor visits. Grief counselors will also be interviewed and possess ASL skills, and may include pastors, ministers, priests, and other religious clergy who serve the Deaf community.
Another vital part of this program will be to generate program awareness throughout the local deaf community by providing advertising and educational materials and possibly a Website.
Community outreach classes will also be a vital component of the program. These classes will help…… [Read More]
Sign language has become a politically charged issue in the deaf community: a means to create a cohesive social group. For the same reason that cochlear implants are viewed as controversial, speaking is occasionally viewed as selling out. Matlin's move did not deter her, however. With moral support from Whoopie Goldberg, Matlin maintained her identity as a proud member of the deaf community while still being willing to express herself in whatever way she pleased.
Matlin is married to a police officer and has four children. She still works as an actor and views herself not as a deaf person who happens to be an actor but the reverse: as an actor who happens to be deaf (Putz 2005). Her level of comfort with the mainstream hearing society is far from threatening to the cohesiveness of the deaf community. Matlin can also be a role model for any aspiring actor needing encouragement from those who actively pursue their dreams without fear.
Matlin would not seem to be a controversial figure but she has been. Reading about Matlin reminded me of how politically charged deafness and deaf culture have become. Speech and cochlear implants can be viewed as bridges between deaf individuals and the world around them, as a means to solidify membership in the deaf community, or both. Matlin shows that deafness is not a hindrance to success; only doubt can prevent the fulfillment of a dream. What Matlin also shows is that deaf individuals are just that: individuals. The deaf community is no more monolithic than the Jewish community or the Latino community. Each person must decide for himself or herself whether or not to embrace speech.
Most likely, Matlin was using her voice to express herself fully. Her decision was a courageous and admirable one, because deaf children and also adults sometimes feel ashamed to use their speaking voice. The voice can be a more shocking reminder of the barriers between deaf and hearing communities. When Matlin was a child her brother humorously referred to her voice as being a foreign accent (Putz 2005). Vocal expression does not need to be perceived as a negative for deaf people. Those who choose to use…… [Read More]
The 2008 television movie Sweet Nothing in My Ear presents the controversy over cochlear implants in a sensitive, albeit heart-wrenching, way. Whether or not Adam receives the implant, he will be a loved child and will grow into a healthy, robust adult with the potential to fulfill his dreams. The question is whether Adam will grow into a Deaf adult or a hearing adult. His mother is Deaf, and so is his grandfather. Adam is therefore already part of the Deaf community, and if he were to not receive the implant, he would seamlessly integrate into that community. With his mother's and grandfather's support and familiarity with Deaf culture, Adam would have no trouble finding ways to thrive without hearing. On the other hand, Adam's father is a hearing person. Because Adam gradually loses his hearing, he has already had one foot in the hearing world. Adam is therefore caught between two worlds, the hearing and the Deaf. Like a bi-cultural or bi-racial child, he will always contend with problems related to fitting in completely with one or the other community. If he decides to shun the implant, he will be embraced by the Deaf community but will have a difficult time integrating into the hearing world when he is in school and in his future career. Adam is too young to make the decision on his own, as his parents' conflicting opinions undoubtedly create confusion in his head. If he has to decide at this stage in his life, the best option for Adam would be to accept the implant in spite of the potential negative consequences he might experience from the Deaf community. It is a difficult choice, but one that must be made as Adam starts to develop an identity. Adam should accept the implant.
The reasons for the implant tend to outweigh the reasons against it. For one, Adam can and will still be a part of the Deaf community; it is up to the community to accept him on his terms and for…… [Read More]
ASL the Deaf Community
ASL: The Deaf Community
Although there has been a call for equality for all students with disabilities in the arena of education, the fact is that there are still inequalities that exist for individuals with deafness. It was reported September 23, 2013 that the National Association of the Deaf (NAD) and Joseph B. Espo, attorney with Brown, Golstein & Levy, LLP in Baltimore, Maryland, "filed a lawsuit against the University of Maryland College Park and several of its officials over the university's long-standing and continuing failure to provide captioning of announcements and commentary made over the public address systems during athletic events at Byrd Stadium and the Comcast Center. The complaint was filed in the United States District Court for the District of Maryland." (National Association of the Deaf, 2013, p.1) According to National Association of the Deaf, a new international human rights treaty, and specifically the 'Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) "recognizes the inclusion of sig language and deaf culture in society." (National Association for the Deaf, 2013, p.1) It is related that the CRPD has been ratified in 134 countries since 2006 although it has not been ratified in the United States. In addition, it is reported, "more than 650 U.S. organizations want to change that including the National Association of the Deaf (NAD) and the U.S. International Council on Disabilities (USICD)." (National Association of the Deaf, 2013, p.1)
I. What is Required?
In order for CRPD to take effect in the United States there is a need for a 2/3 super majority vote in the U.S. Senate. The Senate held a vote on the treaty in December of 2012 and the vote was lost by a mere five votes. Organizations that are opposed to international treaties battled against the CRPD with a campaign that was misinforming and this assisted in defeating the treaty in December 2013. The Senate however, has the power to schedule a new vote. (National Association of the Deaf, 2013, p.1)
II. ASL: Difficulties in Education
Difficulties that deaf children face in mainstream education are reported to include:…… [Read More]
Closed Captioning/CART -- Closed captioning provides an ongoing written transcription of movies, television, and/or stage productions. With new technology, Closed Captioning has moved into Communication Access Real-Tim Translation, or CART. CART transcribes spoken words into printed text onto a screen or computer, and is much more interactive and used for not only entertainment, but court or other official meeting presentations (Nomeland, pp. 180-1).
Alert Systems -- Are relatively low-tech; flashing lights when the doorbell rings, vibrating pillows if there is a smoke or burglar alarm, etc. Most of these technologies have been supplanted by more sophisticated applications on smart phones (Nomeland, p. 187).
Internal devices are medically oriented implants that either amplifies sound in those who have a hearing disability or replace some of the inner ear mechanisms to allow the deaf person to actually "hear" sounds. These are becoming more and more sophisticated, some even with computer "smart" chips to help filter noise and enhance voice sounds. They are relatively expensive and often used for children and teens so they can more actively participate in a hearing world. The issue surrounding these medical implants focuses on the assumption that there is something wrong with being deaf, and that deaf culture needs to be "repaired" using outside technology (Nomeland, pp. 58-9, 211).
The Cochlear Implant Controversy. (February 11, 2009). CBS News Sunday Morning.
Television Show Transcript.
Baron, N 2008, Always on: Language in an Online and Mobile World, Oxford
Univeristy Press, New York.
Kaplan, a. And M. Haenlein. (2010). Users of the world, Unite! The challenges and opportunities of Social Media. Ideas.Respec.org.
Nomeland, M., et.al. (2012). The Deaf Community in America. Jefferson, NC: McFarland…… [Read More]
Three years later, the company improved its picture clarity and introduced the "emotional intonation" feature, considered important components of visual language. But at present, only 10% of the deaf and hard-of-hearing know about VRS. The Internal Revenue Service refuses to accept VRS calls. And VRS can be performed only with high-speed internet access. But companies, like Sorenson, provide videophones for free. Those who have no high-speed internet access or a videophone may use IPP relay. It is similar to the outdated TTY but performs faster and more smoothly. The deaf user types his message on a computer.
For the working deaf who need to use the telephone, Able Planet launched the wireless device. This is a telephone and a hands-free set for a cell phone to address these difficulties in the use of a telephone. The technology enables wireless communication with a telecoil in hearing aids. At the same time, it promises to eliminate noise interferences. Trial users at the Colorado State University said the phones had a 81.6% satisfaction rate for discriminating words while traditional handsets with compatible hearing aids produced only 52.6%. Inventor Jo Waldron said that it was an option for approximately 34 million Americans with mild to severe hearing loss. It costs $34.95 for cell phones as compared with land-line telephones at $65.95.
More Technology for Deaf Workers
Another recent technology is an avatar, which can translate spoken works into sign language. Created by IBM Corporation, this technology is intended for the real world in the absence of an interpreter for the deaf or for confidential conversations. It is, however, in prototype form and is compatible only with the British sign language. It is known as SiSi or "Say It Sign It." It uses speech recognition to convert a conversation into text. Sisi then translates the text…… [Read More]
Sign language is one of the most important elements of deaf communication, and losing this element frightens and outrages some members of the deaf community.
In addition, many deaf people feel that the rehabilitation necessary after implant surgery is often neglected or not budgeted for, and so, it is not managed effectively, and the implants are not used to their full potential. In addition, the implants do not miraculously cure deafness, what implanted patients experience is a reduced and altered sense of sounds and speech at best. Some patients have described the voice as "robotic," and the device will never allow people to hear the same way that a non-deaf person hears. This is another reason the deaf community is against the implants. They believe they make a deaf person even more "handicapped," to put it one way, because they do not fit in either world. They cannot hear the way "normal" people hear, and they can hear better than many deaf people, so they do not really fit in either community, making them an outcast in both. Many deaf organizations decry implants, equating them to genocide or abuse. Another author notes, "Cochlear implants on young healthy deaf children is a form of communication, emotional, and mental abuse' (Canadian Association of the Deaf, 1994)" (Harvey 337). Thus, the people that seem to benefit the most from these implants are the people that seem to shun them the most. While they have helped at least some people enter the hearing world, there is still much research and study that needs to be done to find out how they really affect hearing, especially in children, and how they really affect language and speech abilities.
In conclusion, cochlear implants have helped thousands of profoundly deaf people "hear" again. They can recognize sounds and speech with the implants, and they can develop speech and language themselves. However, many people in the deaf community oppose cochlear implants, because they believe their deafness is not something…… [Read More]
Journey into the Deaf-World
This book looks at the Deaf-World culture in depth. In the process, the authors consider many practical, legal, educational, medical and social issues facing those in the Deaf-World. While the book covers many technical issues in detail, the underpinning for all of it is that the Deaf-World is its own unique culture with its own unique language, and is every bit as much of a subculture as it is to be African-American or some branch of Hispanic.
The authors work hard to establish the Deaf-World as a legitimate subculture. They point out that although most minority groups can point to a geographic location they're from, the Deaf-World is bound by language and experience but not geography. So while Mexican-Americans can point to Mexico on the map, those of the Deaf-World cannot do that.
Throughout the course of the book, the authors demonstrate that often the beliefs of people in the Deaf-World about their culture and language are challenged by people charged with helping them: educators, psychologists, audiologists, social workers, and others all tend to think of hearing loss as a disability. Those in the Deaf-World see it as a cultural difference with a different language. They do not like having the core of how they see themselves characterized as something that needs to be changed or fixed, and are particularly upset by the possibility that genetic engineering or other medical interventions, such as cochlear implants, might eliminate deaf people.
At the core of what makes the Deaf-World its own subculture is its language - American Sign Language (ASL). The authors note that ASL has been harshly criticized for centuries but that current research doesn't support the bias against using sign language.
One of the most persuasive criticisms of ASL came from people translating ASL into spoken English without understanding the particular syntax of ASL, which is entirely different than the syntax used for spoken English. On p. 44, the authors gave this example: A mother would sign:
ME MOTHER RESPONSIBLE CHILDREN ME TAKE-CARE-OF FEED CLEAN LIST." (When ASL is written out, it's done in all caps, and the hyphens indicate specific ways of communicating.)
When looked at as a literal translation, ASL looks like a wholly inadequate language, lacking in detailed vocabulary, adequate grammar and syntax, and complexity. However, one has to know and understand ASL to translate it well. A skilled translator would…… [Read More]
Another means for supporting and financing the education of deaf people is through the promotion of a financial package meant to improve the resources available to special schools and teachers. In this sense, schools in Great Britain for instance receive special funds for training their teachers to reach British Sign Language level 3 (Scottish Council on Deafness, n.d.), to become more aware of the special needs such persons have in the society and the academic environment. At the same time, the recruitment of already trained personal is fully funded in order to have the best teachers available for these special schools.
In theory, these projects are worth mentioning and offer a positive perspective on the issues concerning deaf people. However, not all children or grownups can benefit from such funding possibilities. In the education area, there are only specialized agencies which commit their funds to providing financial support to special schools or individual endeavors. Even so, it is important to see that at least one part of the society is thinking of the less privileged and misfortunate.… [Read More]
BARBIE AND GIRLS' BODY IMAGE
Motherese across Cultures
MOTHERESE ACROSS CULTURES
MOTHERESE ACROSS CULTURES
Motherese across Cultures
Motherese is the universal, infant-directed speech that seems to come to women on instinct when they have a preverbal baby. Some people discourage speaking in "baby talk," because they think that children can't possibly learn good English if they are not spoken to in good English. However, there is a lot of qualitative and quantitative research to suggest that motherese provides an effective bridge between mother and baby for linguistic transfer (TeechConsult's KIDSpad, 2010). Motherese enhances attention using reduplication, the use of special morphemes and phonological modification, and grammatical simplification, helping babies find boundaries between linguistic units. That, though, is not the most interesting thing about motherese. What are most interesting are the similarities and differences of motherese across cultures and linguistic groups.
Pitch Contour Comparisons between Chinese and American Mothers
Mechthild Papousek, Hanus Papousek, and David Symmes (1991) of Munich study the pitch changes that Chinese mothers and American mothers make while speaking to two-month-olds. They chose those two linguistic groups because one is a tonal language and one is a stress language, so they are basically as different as two languages can be. The researchers analyzed the speech contours and acoustic characteristics of the mothers' speech in interactional contexts like arousing/soothing, turn-taking, approving/disapproving, and didactic modeling, and they found that the contours were the same. The only difference between the groups was that the American mothers' pitch highs and lows were more extreme than for the Chinese mothers, so the comparison between the pitch contours would look something like this, where the dashed line represents the American mothers:
This shows cultural differences between Americans and Chinese people, namely that Americans are deservedly considered loud and Asians more restrained.
Thai and Australian Mothers Addressing Different Genders
Likewise, researchers Kitamura, Thanavishuth, Burnham, and Luksaneeyanawin (2001) analyzed motherese in tonal (Thai) and non-tonal (Australian English) languages. However, what they found was a difference in the…… [Read More]
" Nancy Bloch of the National Association of the Deaf agrees that the implants will not destroy deaf culture. "Deaf culture, with its rich visual language and heritage, will nonetheless continue to endure through the ages, even with new and emerging technologies." Hearing aids are already part of the deaf culture, and so too should implants.
Another reason why cochlear implants will not destroy deaf culture is that deaf culture is far from being homogenous. "There is no such thing as the 'average' deaf person," according to Jamie Berke. "Deaf people are oral, wear implants, wear hearing aids, sign, use cued speech, use ASL, use PSE, use SEE, choose to have active deaf social lives or choose to interact primarily within the hearing world." Therefore, deaf culture is as diverse as hearing culture. Berke adds that acceptance of implants is "the key to the deaf community's growth." Belief that the implants will destroy deaf culture is rooted in unnecessary fears that the implants will undermine the strength and integrity of the community.
Like any technological advancement, the cochlear implant causes controversy. As with any issue surrounding social identity, the controversy is valid and understandable. However, the implants can broaden the deaf community by adding to its diversity. Already, members of the deaf community range from those who have been deaf since birth to those who lost partial hearing in their adulthood. The integrity of the deaf community, as with any other, depends on inclusion, not exclusion.
Works… [Read More]
American Sign Language and Gallaudet
Gallaudet University is a college designed for the education of the deaf and hard of hearing. All of the programs are designed for the advancement of the deaf community. The majority of students and faculty are themselves deaf or hard of hearing, although a limited number of students without these disabilities are allowed into the school each year.
The university began in 1857 when the 34th Congress approved the institution of what was then called the Columbia Institution for the Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb and the Blind. The year before, a wealthy philanthropist and former United States Postmaster General Amos Kendall became aware that there was a large group of young people in the Washington D.C. area who were not receiving proper care because they were disabled. He had the court declare the children his legal wards and donated two acres of his property to have a house and special school built for them. This land would become the institution we now know as Gallaudet University.
The intent of the university was never to segregate the deaf community from the outside world. Instead the purpose was to create a place where deaf and hard of hearing individuals could receive the higher education that they had heretofore been denied. In his Presentation Day Address to the students, then University President C. Alphonso Smith stated:
America does mean opportunity. But it was not until 1864 that great principle found illustration in a college for the training of the deaf…It stands for justice, not charity. This college, and this college alone, stands for the principle that a limitation upon one faculty shall not be a limitation upon all faculties, but rather a challenge to all faculties. It stands for the principle that the men and women who enter here shall see before them the same shining goal that beckons to the men and women who enter other colleges (Address).
For more than a century, those in the deaf community could enter the halls of Gallaudet University and become trained for participation in the world at large. The school's directive was to give people born with certain limitations to live in a world where most people will not make…… [Read More]
Unfortunately, I could not hear any sound from my right ear even with the help of hearing aid. For this reason, I used my right ear for the cochlear implant. My right ear had been sleeping for 28 years until the cochlear implant woke it up on September 19th, 2002" ("FAQ," Heather Whitestone Webpage, 2010). Heather writes on her webpage that she strongly supports implants for children and decided to have one as an adult so she could hear the voices of her two young sons.
Whitestone was not only "the first deaf Miss America; in fact, she was the first Miss America with a physical disability of any kind" ("Heather Whitestone," Alabama, 2003). She and continues to come fire because of her public and vocal support of acoupedics and orally-based deaf education. Today, Whitestone lives in Alabama, raising her children. Whitestone married a hearing man, John McCallum, an aide to Newt Gingrich, and has worked as a conservative activist and in support of issues in line with her devout Christian beliefs. Whitestone also works as a motivational speaker promoting her program STARS program (Success Through Action and Realization of your dreamS). STARS is a program focused generally on personal empowerment, not upon aiding individuals with deafness but Whitestone also acts as a spokesperson for the need for new technologies in treating deafness and hearing loss.
Works… [Read More]
(Walls, Hendricks, Dowler, Hirsch, Orslene and Fullmer, 2002). The animal will serve as a vital link between John Q. And the world around him, helping to be independent and to have quality time to himself and allow him to travel on his own.
There is a need, too, to emphasize that services are available to the family as individuals, and in a group setting, to confront and work through the issues that upcoming months, perhaps even years of hardship as a result of John Q's physical injuries will mean to them as a family and as individuals. The focus must be a positive one, for research has shown that positive and hopeful attitudes impact an individual's ability to recover faster and more fully (Schmidt, Vickery, Cotugna, and Snider, 2005).
Researching the conditions and needs of a family and individual as cited above, created a sense of caring and support in me as a researcher and healthcare professional. This empathy is one that serves a patient well, because study and caring arising out of the study of healthcare issues, creates an atmosphere that helps patients accomplish their goals more thoroughly and readily.… [Read More]