Skip to main content

30% Off New Releases: Explore the List

Harvard University Press - home
Inside Deaf Culture

Inside Deaf Culture

Carol Padden, Tom Humphries

ISBN 9780674022522

Publication date: 10/31/2006

In this absorbing story of the changing life of a community, the authors of Deaf in America reveal historical events and forces that have shaped the ways that Deaf people define themselves today. Inside Deaf Culture relates Deaf people's search for a voice of their own, and their proud self-discovery and self-description as a flourishing culture.

Padden and Humphries show how the nineteenth-century schools for the deaf, with their denigration of sign language and their insistence on oralist teaching, shaped the lives of Deaf people for generations to come. They describe how Deaf culture and art thrived in mid-twentieth century Deaf clubs and Deaf theatre, and profile controversial contemporary technologies.

Most triumphant is the story of the survival of the rich and complex language American Sign Language, long misunderstood but finally recently recognized by a hearing world that could not conceive of language in a form other than speech. In a moving conclusion, the authors describe their own very different pathways into the Deaf community, and reveal the confidence and anxiety of the people of this tenuous community as it faces the future.

Inside Deaf Culture celebrates the experience of a minority culture--its common past, present debates, and promise for the future. From these pages emerge clear and bold voices, speaking out from inside this once silenced community.

Praise

  • This well-organized and clearly written book provides a fascinating inside look at the development of Deaf culture… Padden and Humphries’s presentation of these marvelous insights into the history and development of the language and beliefs of the Deaf should be viewed as a welcome step in the quest to inform the hearing world of the rich and fertile culture of the authors’ beloved community.

    —Susan Waltzman, New England Journal of Medicine

Authors

  • Carol Padden is a Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of California, San Diego.
  • Tom Humphries is Associate Professor in the Department of Communication and the Teacher Education Program at the University of California, San Diego.

Book Details

  • 224 pages
  • 0-9/16 x 5-1/2 x 8-1/4 inches
  • Harvard University Press

From this author

Recommendations