Cover: Everyone Here Spoke Sign Language in PAPERBACK

Everyone Here Spoke Sign Language

Hereditary Deafness on Martha’s Vineyard

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Product Details


$29.00 • £23.95 • €26.00

ISBN 9780674270411

Publication Date: 03/15/1988

Academic Trade

184 pages

6 x 9 inches

5 line illustrations, 3 maps, 2 tables


Beautiful and fascinating… I was so moved by Groce’s book that the moment I finished it I jumped in the car, with only a toothbrush, a tape recorder, and a camera—I had to see this enchanted island for myself.—Oliver Sacks, The New York Review of Books

Fascinating… Groce accomplishes much just by pointing out that ‘handicaps’ are something a culture creates, and thus the joint responsibility of us all. That’s what places this book squarely within the best tradition of anthropological writing, and makes it both moving and encouraging.The Village Voice

Brilliantly argued and lively… [Groce’s] information consists of the oral history she herself garnered from some 50 witnesses, almost all more than 75 years old, and the documents in print and in manuscript that cross-check and extend their first-hand accounts. Human genetic theory, ethnographic counterparts and a clear-eyed account of social attitudes are the analytic tools that form her brief and telling work… [A] persuasive and compassionate investigation.Scientific American

It must become essential reading for all concerned with the psychosocial aspects of deafness and for anyone interested in the history of hearing problems. Furthermore, for anyone with a serious interest in the hearing impaired and their problems it will make fascinating and valuable reading… The most readable of books.British Journal of Audiology

[Groce] illuminates and challenges the assumption that discrimination has existed always and everywhere. [She] has made a major contribution to our understanding of deafness, disability and handicap as socially meaningful, dynamic categories.Qualitative Sociology

When is deafness neither handicap nor stigma? When, as this remarkable book recounts, the entire hearing community learns from childhood to be bilingual in conventional speech and sign language, and when the deaf are wholly integrated into the community’s social, economic, religious, and recreational life… A vivid ethnography of a hearing community’s full acceptance of, and adaptation to, deafness. Groce also constructs a fascinating ethnohistory of this genetic disorder.Choice

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