The Deaf-Mute Boy - equal parts travel story, love story, and a resonant confrontation with the Muslim world - is the tale of a gay American professor immersed in a North African society. Maurice Burke, an archaeologist, is invited to speak at a conference in the bustling port town of Sousse, Tunisia. At first disillusioned by its rampant tourism and squalid commercialism, Maurice becomes intrigued by his surroundings after meeting a local deaf-mute boy. While exploring a vibrant souk, Maurice encounters a religious leader who guides him on a fateful introduction to the boy's family. As Maurice's involvement with the deaf-mute boy intensifies, he finds himself drawn into a maze of Tunisian politics, culture, and religion.
Joseph Geraci is the author of the novels Loving Sander and Marrying Tom, and editor of the anthology Dares to Speak. He was a member of the editorial collective of The Catholic Worker and is director of the Paidika Foundation in Amsterdam. For many years he has been a dealer in rare photographs.