Deafness and Hearing Impairment
As each of us gets older, we lose some of our hearing. Some of the loss
comes from exposure to unacceptable noise bombardment, some from taking
medications, some from the aging of the mechanisms of the ear. Most of
us do not think of ourselves as hard of hearing. In fact, we may fail
to realize that we have lost hearing ability until it becomes quite pronounced.
This helps explain why it is difficult for parents and children to recognize
a hearing impairment. Of course, we are much more aware of deafness, but
being unable to hear, or having a profound hearing loss is quite rare,
while having a hearing impairment is much more common.
Sound is collected in the outer ear, travels through the ossicles
(or bones) of the middle ear and delivers pressure waves through
the oval window of the cochlea (of the inner ear) onto the basilar
The inner ear is a fluid-filled space. The cochlea contains sensory
cells that are set off by auditory stimuli. The vestibular system
contains sensory cells that are sensitive to rotational motion,
linear motion, and changes in the position of the head with respect
to the ground.
So, how does this work to create hearing? More graphic representations?
. Both the external ear and middle ear are air-filled spaces.
The key work of the external ear and middle ear is to convert
air pressure waves into liquid pressure waves. "Air pressure waves"
are "sound waves." Liquid pressure waves in the inner ear stimulate
highly-specialized nerve cells in the cochlea. Then nerve impulses
are sent to the brain, and the mind perceives sound - HEARS.
Hearing loss is described as either conductive (the flow of energy down
to the cochlea) or sensorineural ("sensory" refers to the nerve cells
in the cochlea which "fire" in response to the fluid pressure wave; "neural"
refers to nerve impulses beginning with the auditory nerve, which exits
the cochlea and enters the brainstem, and all other nerves within the
brain ultimately leading to the auditory cortex.)
CONDUCTIVE HEARING LOSS: This term is used when there are problems which
the flow of air pressure waves down the ear canal, across the ear drum,
or through the ossicles. Some examples of problems that cause conductive
hearing loss: wax impaction in the canal, infection in the canal, causing
the canal to swell shut, infection, scarring or perforation of the ear
drum. disruption of the ossicles fluid in the middle ear space impaired
mobility of the ossicles.
If the ossicles can't vibrate, sound waves cannot very well be transmitted
through them. Chronic infection can cause scars or adhesions to impair
the mobility of the ossicles. In a condition known as otosclerosis, the
stapes becomes "frozen in place" by bony scarring.
SENSORINEURAL HEARING LOSS.
Drug-induced damage of the cochlea (examples: antibiotics such as gentamicin;
chemotherapy drugs, such as cisplatin.)
Traumatic damage of the cochlea (noise is a form of trauma; a blow to
the head, or penetrating injury of the inner ear, can also cause sensorineural
Age-related damage of the cochlea (presbyacusis.)
A tumor on the auditory nerve (acoustic neuroma or schwannoma.)
Certain infections, such as meningitis.
Adapted from a paper on identifying hearing losses in new borns
- Amie L. Gordon-Langbein, D.O.*
Hearing loss in children is high. Studies suggest
that 14.9 percent of school-aged children have some degree
of hearing loss .Out of 1000 newborns, 3 to 6 are born with congenital
bilateral sensorineural hearing loss. So, congenital hearing loss
is one of the most common health conditions to affect newborn
babies today. It is more common than any other health condition
newborns are currently screened for by means of blood samples.
Unfortunately, the average age for detecting
a congenital hearing loss in the US is two-and-a-half years. Children
with mild to moderate hearing loss tend to be diagnosed even later,
at age four. A baby cannot usually tell that he or she cannot
hear. Hearing loss is invisible! since the child does not realize
that others hear more than they can, they are unlikely to tell
anyone of hearing problems.
Any degree of hearing loss is significant in
a young child since hearing loss can affect children's behavior,
self-esteem, and academic performance, as well as their social
interactions with others. After all, hearing is fundamental to
learning language, especially in children, who have yet to master
the basic building blocks of speaking. Studies estimate that as
much as 90 percent of what young children learn comes through
reception of incidental conversations around them. To acquire
new information, children must be able to hear the information,
and through a series of complex events send the information to
their brains for further processing.
The first four years of a child's life are crucial
in terms of speech and language development, and clearly speech
and language skills are the precursors to higher levels of cognitive
maturation. Researchers have postulated that 80 percent of a child's
ability to acquire speech, language, and other cognitive processes
is determined by the time they are three years of age (ASHA, 1997).
Children who cannot hear the world around them are at a distinct
disadvantage on a multitude of levels. Early detection of hearing
loss is the key to early intervention. Researcher Christine Yoshinago-Itano
has demonstrated that if a newborn with a hearing loss is diagnosed
prior to six months of age and treated appropriately, the child
achieves higher language levels than children with delayed diagnoses
(Yoshinago-Itano, Sedey, Coulter, and Mehl, 1998). Likewise, children
who are diagnosed and treated early develop speech and language
skills equivalent to their peers (Yoshinaga-Itano et al., 1998).
American Academy of Pediatrics, Task Force on
Newborn and Infant Hearing. (1999). Newborn and infant hearing
loss: Detection and intervention. Pediatrics,103, 527-530. American-Speech-Language-Hearing
Association. (1991). Joint Committee on Infant Hearing 1990 Position
Statement, 22(Suppl. 5), 3-6.
American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.
(1997). Model Universal Newborn/Infant Hearing Screening, Tracking,
and Intervention Bill, 1-10.
Anderson, K. L. (1992). Keys to effective hearing
conservation programs: Hearing status of school age children.
In E. Cherow (Ed.), Proceedings of the ASHA Audiology Superconference
Bess, F. H., & Paradise, J. L. (1994). Universal
screening for infant hearing impairment: Not simple, not risk-free,
not necessarily beneficial and not presently justified. Pediatrics,
93, 330-334. Flexer, C. (1993, August 14). Classroom management
of children with hearing loss: Preferential seating is not enough.
Presentation, San Francisco, CA. Mehl, A. L., & Thomson V. (1998).
Newborn hearing screening: The great omission. Pediatrics,101,
Musselman, C. R., Wilson, A. K., & Lindsay, P.
H. (1988). Effects of early intervention on hearing impaired children.
Exceptional Children, 55, 222-228.
National Institutes of Health Consensus Statement.
(1993, March). Early identification of hearing impairment in infants
and young children. National Institutes of Health Consensus Development
Statement, Bethesda, MD, 1-24.
Niskar, A. S., Kieszak, S. M., Holmes, A., Estaban,
E., Rubin, C., Brody, D. J. (1998). Prevalence of hearing loss
among children 6-19 years of age: The third national health and
nutrition examination survey. Journal of the American Medical
Association, 279(14), 1071-1075.
Northern, J. L., & Downs, M. P. (1991). Hearing
in children, 4th edition. Baltimore, MD: Williams & Wilkins.
White, K. R., Vohr, B. R. & Behrens, T. R. (1993).
Universal newborn hearing screening using transient evoked otoacoustic
emissions: Results of the Rhode Island Hearing Assessment Project.
Seminars in Hearing,14, 18-29.
Yoshinago-Itano, C., Sedey, A. L., Coulter, D.
K., & Mehl, A. L. (1998). Early- and later-identified children
with hearing loss. Pediatrics,102, 1161-1171.
* Amie L. Gordon-Langbein, D.O., is a parent of two children,
one of whom has a hearing loss. She is also a board-certified
family physician and works as a consultant and advocate for children
with hearing loss and their families. She is a member of the Alexander
Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing.
Fill out this chart to clarify the differences in the two major types
of hearing loss: [25 points].
|Type of Loss
||How to assess it
||How to correct it
Potential Causes of Hearing Loss
Viral infections like mumps or measles
Meningitis or other bacterial infections
Side effects from medicines ( including aspirin and antibiotics)
Excessive noise - above 85 decibels
Deafness does not prevent language
Jennifer Woolensack Kent State University Gaines, R., & Halpern-Felsher,
B. L. (1995). Language preference and communication development
of a hearing and deaf twin pair. American Annals of the Deaf,
Summary: Language characteristics of deaf and hard of
hearing students vary as all children's characteristics do. However,
language and communication development can be enhanced by preference
and environmental factors. The twins being studied are both girls,
one is Ann, who was healthy until the age of 7 months, when she
contracted pneumococcal meningitis and became binaurally profoundly
deaf. The other twin is Dianne, who is hearing and healthy. The
study examines the communication development and language preferences
of twin girls who are alike in age, genetic structure, and home
and school environment, but who are different in one particular
way: hearing ability. At the age of 13 months, the twins were
brought to HI CHIPS program, to educate them both at the same
place. They were taught both vocal and sign language. The twins
were videotaped over a 20-month period, in monthly intervals.
All communication was recorded and categorized by style. The
language preference analysis showed that Ann preferred nonvocal
language, and that Diane used vocal language. The bulk of the
hand gestures were used in the request category by both twins.
However, body movements were preferred much more by Ann. The study
showed that both twins had the ability to learn language and to
This shows that deafness does not prevent language acquisition.
Although Ann was not as successful in vocal language, she still
was able to develop appropriate visual language that was parallel
to her chronological age. Diane was able to use both forms of
language, visual and vocal, but preferred vocal. However, with
knowing both forms, she helped her twin sister by communicating
with her, which made Ann's language development more accelerated.
This observation shows that early intervention and diverse modes
of communication can benefit the development of language, especially
for the deaf. Key Points: Language characteristics vary from person
to person, but environment and preference play a crucial role.
Deafness does not prevent language acquisition. Early intervention
and diverse communication are key to the development of language
for the deaf.
Tips and Strategies on Using Technology
Assistive Listening Devices
|Computerized Speech-to-text Translations
Summarize what each of these applications offers to those who are
hearing impaired. In addition, find five links for each of these technological
advances. Feel free to add a critique on the pros and cons or feelings
of those who have utilized them [50 points].
Portraits of Helen
Keller using various forms of communication with Alexander Graham
may be misunderstood and can be something missed in initial observations.
Be certain to check hearing as one of the first procedures --
and if there is a possibility of inner ear infections, continue
to monitor hearing as a potential contributor to communication
Characteristics that suggest a closer look
at the possibility of a hearing impairment
||Poor speech, limited vocabulary, voice quality
is poor - tone, strained sound, unusually high
||Withdrawn behaviors, dependent on teacher, difficulty
making friends, less socially mature, may be quite irritable or
||Achievement is below ability, limited written language,
spelling is unusual, as though missing sounds or hearing things
others do not hear, phonetic instruction changes verbalizations
||Does not seem to respond to verbal instructions,
may not come when bell rings, seems to lip read when communicating
array of Helen Keller with different celebrities
American Sign Language
For many years -- certainly long before anyone
reading this was born, a deaf culture has existed. Children
could find support, education and companionship among others
who spoke through signs. The deaf culture protected and cared
for individuals and gave them a sense of identity and acceptance
long before PL94-142.
You can learn to sign by using some of these locations
on the web. There are also commercial CDs available that show
people signing. Not only does this help in the work with youngsters
who cannot hear, it is a powerful tool to use when a youngster
has an auditory processing deficit. In fact, I find that a sign
is a better tool in working with some youngsters who are mentally
retarded, as well, since it speeds up processing time and they
enjoy the physical motions and nonverbal cueing.
Seriously consider giving yourself and others
the gift of learning to sign.
There are four basic approaches that are currently used
with children who are hard of hearing, or deaf. Some people have very
strong feelings about one way or another being the "BEST"
or "ONLY" way to teach students. For some reason, any
time we are talking about the long and difficult practice of teaching
communication skills, we get heavy investment -- like the so-called
reading wars - phonics or whole language, short vowels
or long vowels first, basals or language experience. Some of the discussions
are intercontinental, even.
The feelings can be very strong about the approach used
to support children with hearing losses. In part, it comes from the
fact that each approach is successful with some students -- and each
approach has been used to help students who were failing when using
some other way to learn to communicate. Perhaps some also comes from
the length of time that a deaf community has existed and the strong
family feeling that can come from feeling "at home" with someone
who can share our own feelings, break the sense of isolation.
Something to ponder -- can we read minds? Can you tell
what the person sitting next to you thinks or feels? No! Even when we
are in community - grow up with a mother, father, grandparent, sibling,
we are not able to break out of the isolation of being the only one
who really feels our own headache, depression, misery.
At least we can talk about it with others, and the talking
soothes us, helps us feel that we are not alone.
Now imagine a child growing up without that facility -
not really able to slip into language and share feelings, ideas, frustrations
without adding to the frustration by the road blocks that communicating
highlights. In that place, would you look for others who could share?
Would you feel anger and alienation? What if there were a simple way
to share emotions, ideas and a stream of consciousness by gesturing,
moving, motioning? How invested might you become in finding others,
identifying with others, feeling close to others who could do the same
-- who wanted to do what it took to understand you?
Well, enough supposition. Why not look at the debate yourself?
Students with Hearing Loss
by Jill Stedman
There are many things in life that we are blessed with that we
take for granted. We can walk, talk, hear and see things in our
world. For the most part we donít have any huge disabilities,
and we walk around assuming everyone has it just as easy. But
There are millions of Americans who get up each morning and go
about a days work struggling through our world of communication.
They wake up but not to the sound of an alarm clock or music,
not to the voice of the ones they love, but to silence. These
Americans canít hear, and it affects the lives of about twenty
million people living in the United States.
Before we can totally grasp the thought of waking up to silence
each morning, we must first understand how our hearing ears work
and then what goes wrong with deaf peoples ears. There are three
main parts to our ears and three different levels on which we
hear. First, lets start with the parts of the ear. Starting with
the part you can see there is the outer ear. This part of our
ears doesnít do that much, but without it there would be nothing
to direct sound into the rest of our ear. So the pinna (the outer
part of the ear you can see) collects sounds and directs them
back into the auditory canal. It is also a protector, in that
it protects the internal structures of our ears.
Then we move toward the middle ear. The eardrum separates the
outer ear and the middle ear. When you get past the eardrum you
would see three small bones. These bones carry the vibrations
of sound across the middle ear into the inner ear cavity. These
bones are called the malleus, incus and stapes. There is also
the Eustachian tube that sits in the middle ear and it equalizes
the pressure built up in your ears. When someone gets and ear
infection, it is because the Eustachian tube isnít controlling
the air pressure correctly and fluid builds up as a result. So
the last part of the ear that we need to know is the inner ear.
Inside there are the most important parts of our ears. There is
the cochlea and the vestibular mechanism. The vestibular mechanism
is used so we can keep our balance, but the cochlea is the whole
reason we can hear. In its small snail shell form it contains
the auditory nerve endings. Those nerve endings are what sense
the sound vibrations and with the help of central auditory processing
we can hear and understand speech and language.
Now lets look at the different levels in which we hear. These
have been studied and given to us by a man named Ramsdell. He
says that we hear on a symbolic level, a signal or warning level
and an auditory background or primitive level. The symbolic level
is used to understand another persons spoken words. It helps us
to turn the words into actual objects or concepts in our minds.
The signal or warning level keeps us alert of our surroundings
and whether or not we need to fear something. The auditory background
or primitive level is how we monitor our surroundings constantly.
For someone that is considered hard-of-hearing, they donít have
the ability to perform at the auditory background level. Now that
we know something about the way we hear, letís look at what it
really means to be deaf or hearing impaired. These two words have
different meanings although many people use them interchangeably.
that someone has a hearing loss that is so immense that it canít
be used to develop oral language.
When someone says
hearing impaired it is a generic term that designates a person
with some kind of hearing loss, but it doesnít specify the intensity
of that loss. When we look at hearing impaired, we will find two
groups that people will fit into; either they are deaf or hard-of-hearing.
If we first look at hard-of-hearing we will see that it is simply
a person, with the help of a hearing aid, which can hear sufficiently
to successfully process language/speech through audition. But
looking at someone that would be classified as deaf, we see there
is a lot more to it.
Those that are hard of hearing generally gain this problem through
aging or from the work that they do. Deafness is brought on by
birth problems, illness or accident. If you were born deaf, then
you would be congenitally deaf. There would be a reason
behind how you developed and such; it wasnít caused by an accident
or any kind of illness. Then there is adventitious deafness.
This is when someone born with normal hearing experiences nonfunctional
hearing because of and accident or illness. This can last only
a little while or it can be permanent.
We will look at adventitiously deaf in more depth, because it
has more causes and resolutions to it. The first big thing is
that there are five major types of adventitiously deaf. They are
1) conductive, 2) sensorineural, 3) mixed hearing loss, 4) functional,
or 5) central auditory disorder.
Each type of hearing loss has some reason and some result to
it. Conductive hearing loss stems from a structural problem
with the outer and middle ear. The most common cause of this is
otitis media, otherwise known as an ear infection. This is especially
common among school age children and it can be fixed with medication.
If it becomes a constant problem with a child, they may need to
surgically place a special tube inside the ear to help the Eustachian
tube to correctly balance the air pressure.
The conductive hearing loss can also result from an earwax build-up
or otoscierosis. Otoscierosis is a spongy, bony growth around
the stapes one. If this occurs a doctor can do surgery to overcome
the difficulty. There is rarely a time that a conductive hearing
loss becomes so severe that it is permanent. For the most part,
these problems can be treated and the child will have normal hearing,
speech and language.
A more serious form of hearing loss is sensorineural hearing
loss. This occurs when damage has been done to the cochlea or
the auditory nerve. A viral disease is a major one of the causes,
although other illnesses and disease can cause this. It requires
painstaking treatment, and cannot be cured all the way. The degree
to which a child may be deaf depends. One way a baby may be born
with sensorineural hearing loss is if the pregnant mother catches
rubella during the first three months of pregnancy. Another big
cause for babies with sensorineural problems is Rh incompatibility.
Usually babies born under these circumstances donít survive, but
if they do they have a high risk of being deaf.
Hereditary factors may also play in the role of hearing
loss in children. Someone with mixed hearing loss has a mixture
of the problems discussed above. This kind of hearing loss can
create incredible difficulties for school children. The last two
hearing loss problems are functional hearing loss and central
auditory disorders. A functional hearing loss is usually
to compensate for another problem a child is having. It is usually
masking some type of real or perceived social or psychological
struggle. This occurs generally in children ages of 9 to 13. These
are also usually found in the hearing tests performed in schools.
A central auditory disorder is one where there isnít any
measurable peripheral hearing loss. It is a result of a lesion
or damage to the central nervous system. The child may show signs
of difficulty with auditory comprehension, language development
or auditory learning. The actual cause of this is very hard to
discover. As I said in the introduction, there are millions of
Americans that fight with this everyday. Total there is about
8-10 percent of people in this country with a hearing disorder
of some kind. Over a million pre-school, elementary and secondary
education children have hearing loss and twelve million young
adults between the ages of 18 and 25. This is a very prevalent
problem within the United States, and Iím sure with the rest of
the world as well.
As a future teacher, I know that it could affect my classroom
and so it is important that I am aware, as with the rest of teachers,
what signs to look for and how it affects a classroom. There are
many ways to evaluate someoneís hearing ability. Most schools,
if not all public schools perform a pure tone-screening test.
This is when the child hears different frequencies from a machine
and must raise his/her hand to respond to it. They test the frequency
range from 250 Hz to 8000 Hz and at an intensity of 20 to 25 dB.
Another type of test is a threshold test. There is the air conduction
threshold test that will reveal any hearing loss and tells the
amount as well. Then there is the bone conduction, which measures
the sensorineural mechanism of the inner ear. This is the best
test to check for a mixed or sensorineural hearing loss. There
are also the speech reception threshold test and special audiometric
test. The speech test will test whether or not a child can hear
and understand speech and the special audiometric helps physicians
treat otitis media, a middle ear infection. There are many types
of treatments that can help make hearing loss easier on the individual.
There are hearing aids and assistive listening devices that can
make it easier for the deaf to make it in a communication-based
There is also auditory training that can teach those with hearing
impairment to use their residual hearing to its greatest extent.
This kind of training is used to familiarize parent and children
with the nature of hearing loss, with the types of rehabilitation
and with what they can expect from auditory training. When educating
a child with hearing loss, you must first know how to recognize
the problem. One big thing to notice in a child with possible
hearing loss is whether they are paying attention in class. If
they have a lot of earaches or a discharge from their ear(s) it
is a good idea to have them sent to a doctor. When they canít
answer easy questions or they fail to respond when spoken to it
is possible that they are having trouble hearing speech and language.
Teachers also need to be aware that there are specific ways to
teach children with hearing loss. Those children with mild to
moderate hearing loss should be given appropriate seating in the
classroom and special attention to complete their work. They may
need to be placed in a special class depending on how they progress
through school. IF a child has moderate to severe hearing loss
they will probably need special therapy and reinforced drills
in the classroom. If there are more than one hearing impaired
student in any particular classroom, it is advised that a teacher
set up some sort of auditory training unit so they can help each
When it comes to social and personal concerns, there can be many
problems. When a child becomes deaf at an early age or is born
deaf they can have a high frequency of emotional and social adjustments.
These result from parental difficulty with accepting deafness,
lack of a role model, and limited activities in school and out
of school. When considering the career of a teacher, you must
realize that there are hurdles that you might have to jump over
in the classroom. You have to be able to be flexible and work
with children when they need help. Teachers need to be aware of
their studentsí struggles and disabilities. So when thinking of
having a career that will greatly impact hundreds or thousands
of lives, you must be able to assess the children correctly and
be able to help them if they have special needs.
Pros and Cons
Fill in the chart, using the ideas you gain from reading
the text and in your web searches. Try to talk with a person who is
invested in one of the approaches, and if possible, talk with the parents
or chums to see a more varied look at the emotions and investments surrounding
this critical debate. [25 points have been allotted for this activity].
1. Read a book written by a family member, telling about
their personal insights and challenges. Make a list of the ways a
teacher might support the parent and child experiences. Make a second
list of things parents might tell an educator about a child with hearing
problems. [50 points].
2. Locate a parent who will allow you to visit the child
at the school or in the home and spend a minimum of 4 hours observing
the youngster. As part of the observation experience, identify at
least three student strengths. Look for the youngster's interests
and determine some of the ways contact points that could be used to
engage the student. How does the family engage the student? What adaptations
are made to help the child and what adaptations does the child make
to engage the family? [25 points per hour for observing; 50 points
for the adaptation summary].
3. Watch The Miracle Worker, the movie for 50
points and send a review of the characterization of Helen Keller as
a person without language or hearing for another 25 points.
4. Learn about the controversy in signing or speaking
as part of the feelings communicated by the community. Try to find
an opportunity to watch someone use signing with a child. After looking
at the pros and cons, develop a paragraph stating your personal feelings
about the controversy. [25 points]
5. Identify three commonly held fallacies about autism
and then provide three fact based beliefs about people with hearing
impairment. [15 points]
6. Locate and review one of the diagnostic instruments
used to evaluate youngsters who may have a hearing loss. You may offer
to help a nurse at a local school give hearing tests. Do you think
the tests are accurate? Adequate?[25 points].
7. Remember to feel free to develop your own personal
response to the material. Allot yourself approximately 25 points per
hour for your work.
8. There are several very different kinds of hearing
losses that are included in the broad diagnoses. Choose one of the
categories and find at least 10 articles or discussions about the
characteristics of the particular kind or level of hearing loss..
Feel free to use materials off the web, as well. Then write a paper
of 500-1000 words, discussing the challenges these young people have
and suggest a set of methods or materials that might address strengths
and diminish barriers to education. [100 points for each paper.]
9. Go to a company, such as Beltone and have your own
hearing checked. Report how it feels and the results of the assessment.
10. Take a short course in sign language to learn to
sign. Give yourself 25 points for each hour you spend learning to
11. Find someone who uses ASL exclusively to communicate
and interview them about the process, the strengths and weaknesses
of the medium. [25 points].
12. Speak with the phone company about the TDD. Make
a point of searching for a TDD phone in each building you go to for
a week. [50 points].
Bragg, Bernard. (1989). Lessons in laughter: The autobiography of
a deaf actor (as signed to Eugene Bergman). Washington, DC: Gallaudet
University Press. Bragg, a deaf child born to deaf parents, is Deaf, not
deaf, where the capitalized letter denotes a linguistic and cultural minority.
The author is an accomplished actor in deaf drama.
Cohen, Leah H. (1994). Train go sorry: Inside a deaf world. Boston:
Houghton Mifflin. The author relates personal experience of deafness,
focusing especially on the Lexington School during its attempt to assimilate
signing into a historically oral educational tradition.
Gibson, William. (1960). The miracle worker. New York: Bantam
Books. This play is based on the story of Helen Keller and her teacher,
Groce, Nora E. (1985). Everyone here spoke sign language. Cambridge,
MA: Harvard University Press. For over 200 years, Martha's Vineyard had
a high incidence of people with hereditary deafness. Thus, nearly all
the residents, both hearing and deaf, learned sign language. This book
shares the oral history gathered from about 50 witnesses.
Keller, Helen. (1961). The story of my life: The autobiography of
Helen Keller. New York: Dell Books. Keller writes her own story.
Lane, Harlan. (1984). When the mind hears: A history of the deaf.
New York: Random House. This book tells about the history and culture
of the deaf. American Sign Language is sponsored.
Lane, Harlan. (1992). The mask of benevolence: Disabling the deaf
community. New York: Alfred A. Knopf. Lane offers a historical review
of attitudes toward deaf people in Europe and America. He argues against
the use of cochlear implants in children.
Merker, Hannah. (1994). Listening. New York: Harper Collins. The
author who experienced a trauma induced severe hearing loss at the age
of 39 discusses the various difficulties of her hearing loss, and the
stigma attached to it.
Sacks, Oliver. (1991). Seeing voices: A journey into the world of
the deaf. London: Pan Books. Sacks, a neurologist, turns his writing
talents to understanding deaf society. He reviews the education of the
deaf in America, considers American Sign Language, and Gallaudet College.
He argues for ASL as the preferred language for the deaf.
Sidransky, Ruth. (1990). In silence: Growing up hearing in a deaf
world. New York: St Martin's. A hearing child of deaf parents shares
personal and intense feelings of straddeling two worlds.
Spradley, Thomas, & Spradley, James. (1978). Deaf like me (reprint).
Washington, D.C.: Gallaudet University Press. The focus of this book is
the family endeavor to bring Lynn into the world of oral communication,
eventually becoming disenchanted with oralism and recognizing the importance
of sign as the means to Lynn's communicative life.
Walker, Lou Ann. (1986). A loss for words: The story of deafness in
a family. New York: Harper and Row. Walker shares her experiences
as the hearing child of deaf parents.
web site with book lists in several areas.
Singular Book company
- large array of books on the subject
Bridge to Silence
Children of A Lesser God
Dead Silence (HBO TV-movie)
For A Deaf Son (PBS Documentary)
The Heart is a Lonely Hunter
In the Land of the Deaf
The Miracle Worker - Original version with Patty Duke,
The Miracle Worker (remake) Version with Melissa Gilbert
in the title role of Helen Keller.
Mr. Holland's Opus
A Summer to Remember
You should now:
Go back to Characteristics
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Course developed by J'Anne
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