By Irene W. Leigh

ISBN-10: 0195320662

ISBN-13: 9780195320664

This identify explores id formation in deaf folks. It appears on the significant impacts on deaf id, together with the quite contemporary formal reputation of a deaf tradition, different internalized versions of incapacity and deafness, and the looks of deaf id theories within the mental literature.

summary: This identify explores identification formation in deaf individuals. It appears to be like on the significant impacts on deaf identification, together with the rather fresh formal acceptance of a deaf tradition, different internalized versions of incapacity and deafness, and the looks of deaf identification theories within the mental literature

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Extra info for A lens on deaf identities

Sample text

Yes, I’m deaf. Yes, I can sign. Yes, I can speak. I have a variety of interesting people in my life and they happen to communicate in a variety of ways. But most of all I’m just Karen—a wife, a mom, and a person who does a variety of things. Get to know me as Karen first, the rest falls in place. (K. Putz, personal communication, March 25, 2006) Putz has decided to center herself on the personal self-definition, but the social definition as defined by “the other” is all too often omnipresent. As indicated in a study of oral deaf adults, those who wanted to connect with Deaf adults reported being rejected by those who objected to oral values (Leigh, 1999a), thereby reinforcing separatism and forcing further self-definition about who they were as opposed to Deaf culture members.

I transferred to Northern Illinois University (which has a contingent of deaf students) and it was there that I had a clash of identities. I was no longer hard of hearing, but I was labeled hard of hearing because I could talk well and didn’t know how to sign. Suddenly I was surrounded by peers who were signing; some were native ASL users and some used simultaneous communication. I started making friends in this new world of mine. Five years later, Identity and the Power of Labels 21 I was substitute teaching in sign classes at the university.

While Humphries (1996, 2004) describes this separatism as necessary to facilitate the analysis of what Deaf means, this process has exacerbated tensions about identity by reinforcing the distance between culturally Deaf members and those deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals comfortable with using spoken languages who may or may not use a sign language (Davis, 2008; Skelton & Valentine, 2003), distances that were far less prominent when I was growing up. In turn, the groups being distanced from are simultaneously distancing themselves from Deaf groups.

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A lens on deaf identities by Irene W. Leigh


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