What is deaf culture?


Culturally deaf refers to individuals who identify with and participate in the language, culture, and community of Deaf people, based on a signed language.

Deaf culture does not perceive hearing loss and deafness from a pathological point of view, but rather from a socio-cultural linguistic point of view, indicated by a capital ‘D’ as in “Deaf culture.”

Culturally Deaf people may also use residual hearing, hearing aids, speechreading and gesturing to communicate with people who do not sign.


Elements of deaf culture

•Deaf culture meets all five sociological criteria (language, values, traditions, norms and identity) for defining a culture.

Sign language is the prominent language e.g. American Sign Language (ASL) and LSQ are the two predominant visual languages used by Deaf people in Canada.

Values in Deaf people include the importance of clear language and communication for all in terms of expression and appreciation. Preserving  Deaf heritage, Deaf literature and Deaf art are examples of what Deaf people value.

Traditions include the stories, folklores, festivals, and theatres kept alive through Deaf generations, experiences and participation in Deaf cultural events. For example, Deaf Children Festivals in Deaf Schools, Mayfest, International Week of Deaf Awareness, etc. to celebrate and acknowledge the accomplishments and struggles of Deaf people throughout history.

Social norms of behaviour often cause cross-cultural conflicts between Deaf and hearing people.

•Culturally Deaf people have rules of etiquette for getting attention, walking through signed conversations, leave-taking, and otherwise politely negotiating.

Norms refer to rules of behaviour in the Deaf community. All cultures have their own set of behaviours that are deemed acceptable. For Deaf people, it includes getting someone’s attention appropriately, using direct eye contact and correct use of shoulder tapping.

Identity is one of the key components of the whole person. Accepting that one is Deaf and is proud of his/her culture and heritage and a contributing member of that society.

Members of deaf community

•Members of the Deaf community tend to view deafness as a difference in human experience rather than a disability or disease.

• Many members take pride in their Deaf identity.

•It includes deaf and hearing people , that share in the culture and use ASL.

It includes

•Deaf people

•Family of deaf person (parent, spouses, sinlings, grandparents….) •Interpreters

•Teacher of deaf and Hard of hearing

•CODA (Children Of Deaf Adult)

Rehabilitation services for deaf culture


• interpreter referral and advocacy

•Parental guidance

•Be aware of the varied needs of deaf individuals and familiar with the unique characteristics of the culture and community.

•  Rehabilitation of those with impaired hearing must start as soon as the handicap is diagnosed.

•The parents should take active part during the training sessions and at home.

•Enabling to tell the stories of hearing impaired people.

•Breaking deaf stereotypes and normalizing sign language through gaming beacuse gaming is the big platform for children to share their culture.

Using visual clues.

    This goes beyond separating sounds and words on the lips. It involves using all kinds of visual clues that give meaning to a message, such as the speaker’s facial expression, body language, etc.

  Improving speech and providing language therapy

This involves skill development in the production of speech sounds (by themselves, in words, and in conversation), speaking rate, breath control, loudness, and speech rhythms.

Managing communication.

Deaf students in the mainstream and found that their interaction with non-Deaf students was severely shortened due to communication barriers. The study also found that Deaf students tended for the most part to socialize with each other rather than with non-Deaf students .

Vocational rehabilitation Of Deaf

•The goal of VR is to provide employment related services that result in competitive employment in a career. That matches the VR consumer’s strengths, interests, abilities, and employment goals

•Career counseling, vocational assessment, assistive technology, job placement, soft skills development, and on-the-job training.

• The specific services provided by vocational rehabilitation are tailored to meet an individual’s specific career goal.

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