Essay about Deaf Culture : The Deaf Community

3620 Words Apr 14th, 2015 15 Pages
Deaf Culture
In the United States there are approximately 36 million individuals with who have hearing loss to some degree and of these, and an estimated 500,000 are culturally Deaf and part of the Deaf community (Fileccia, 2011). Deaf, with a capital D refer to individuals who consider themselves part of the Deaf community culturally, whereas deaf refers to a condition in which one lacks the ability to hear. Deaf culture is similar to any other culture in that it can be characterized by certain elements that might make up any other cultural community. These would include area such as a shared language (American Sign Language [ASL]), awareness of cultural identity (Deaf), behavioral patterns and norms, cultural artifacts, marital patterns that are endogamous, historical knowledge, religion, educational institutions and networks of social organizations (Fileccia, 2011; Reagan, 1995).
Cultural Analysis Language is a major identifier within the Deaf community, as is the case with almost any other cultures. As is typically seen across the globe, language is geographically specific, the same holds true for sign languages used by Deaf. American Sign Language (ASL) differs from British Sign Language (BSL) and Finnish Sign Language (FiSL) (Stebnicki & Coeling, 1999). In addition to ASL in the United States, there is also pidgin sign often used by hearing signers to communicate with the Deaf community and manual sign codes for English, which is thought to be awkward means of…

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