IS DEAF CULTURE REALLY A CULTURE?

ABSTRACT

Whether or not the term ‘Deaf Culture’ can be used to define the unique interactions of Deaf individuals as a true ‘culture’ has been discussed numerous times over the years. The purpose of this article is to establish both the definition and relevance, of the term in the UK’s modern Deaf community. It also considers whether recent changes to the mode of community interaction, and technological advancements, have affected Deaf people, and if so, to what extent. Having considered numerous academic sources, there would appear to be some agreement as to the basis of Deaf culture, although there is no strict criterion for membership. It has been suggested that ‘Deaf culture’ is a term used exclusively by hearing people since Deaf people themselves would view their interactions as the cultural norm. The research in this article suggests that not only is Deaf culture a true ‘culture, but it is in-fact a thriving and ever-adapting force pulling the Deaf community together to protect their unique heritage and way of life. The culturally Deaf are similar to any other minority community living in the UK, and they are both proud to promote and quick to defend their culture.

FULL TEXT

1.1.6-Sharps-BSL-Deaf-Studies


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