This book presents a `Traveller's Guide' to Deaf Culture, starting from the premise that Deaf cultures have an important contribution to make to other academic disciplines, and human lives in general. Within and outside Deaf communities, there is a need for an account of the new concept of Deaf culture, which enables readers to assess its place alongside work on other minority cultures and multilingual discourses. The book aims to assess the concepts of culture, on their own terms and in their many guises and to apply these to Deaf communities. The author illustrates the pitfalls which have been created for those communities by the medical concept of `deafness' and contrasts this with his new concept of "Deafhood", a process by which every Deaf child, family and adult implicitly explains their existence in the world to themselves and each other.
Paddy Ladd is a Lecturer and MSc co-ordinator at the Centre for Deaf Studies in the University of Bristol. He completed his PhD in Deaf Culture at Bristol University in 1998 and has written, edited and contributed to numerous publications in the field. Both his writings and his Deaf activism have received international recognition, and in 1998 he was awarded the Deaf Lifetime Achievement Award by the Federation of Deaf People, for activities which have extended the possibilities for Deaf communities both in the UK and worldwide.
Introduction - Walking the tight trope 1. Deaf Community 2. Deafness and Deafhood in Western Civilisation: Towards the Development of a New Conceptual Framework 3. Twentieth Century Discourses on Deafness and Deafhood 4. Culture: Definitions and Theories 5. Deaf Culture: Discourses and Definitions 6. Researching Deaf Communities: Subaltern-Researcher Methodologies 7. The Roots of Deaf Culture: The Residential School 8. The Roots of Deaf Culture: Deaf Clubs and Deaf Subalterns 9. Subaltern Rebels and Deafhood: The National Dimension 10. Conclusions and Implications 11. Afterword: Imagined Futures Further Reading/ Appendices