Genealogical Analysis, Deafness, Sign Language

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  • 1.Tracing a genealogy of Deafness and Sign Language 1700- 2006 A Foucauldain analysis By Jennifer Malcolm, for Language, Discourse and Power, Massey University

2. Introduction

  • A brief explanation of Deaf culture vs auditory deafness
  • A brief explanation of genealogical analysis
  • Text 1: Discourses identified in this text and the effects it had
  • Text 2: Discourses identified in this text and the effects it had

3. Cultural Deafness vs auditory deafness vs 4. Genealogical analysis, an overview

  • Foucault
  • Discourses through time
  • Discourses that create versions of truths
  • Effects of these discourses
  • Discourses that use a basis of common sense
  • Topics that are largely ignored

Carbine, J (2001). Unmarried motherhood 1830-1990: A genealogical analysis. In M. Wetherall, S. Taylor & S. Yates (Eds.)Discourse theory and practice: A reader(pp.267-274). London: Harvester Wheatsheaf 5. Text 1 Oral speech is the sole power that can rekindle the light God breathed into man when, giving him a soul in a corporeal body, he gave him also a means of understanding, of conceiving and expressing himself. While, on the other hand, mimic signs are not sufficient to express the fullness of thought, on the other hand they enhance and glorify fantasy and all the faculties of the sense of imagination.The fantastic language of signs exalts the senses and foments the passions, whereas speech elevates the mind much more naturally, with calm, prudence and truth. Tarra ended by defying anyone to define in sign language the soul, faith, hope, charity, justice, virtue, the angels, GodNo shape, no image, no design, Tarra concluded, can reproduce these ideas. Speech alone, divine itself, is the right way to speak about divine matter. Lane, H. (1999).The mask of benevolence: disabling the Deaf community(2nd ed),(p 92) San Diego, CA: DawnSignPress. Giulio Tarra quotes from congress of Deaf educators in Milan in 1880 6. Discourses identified in this text:

  • Divinity of spoken language inferiority of sign language
  • Spoken Language as a gift from God
  • Sign Language and the people who used it as as animalistic
  • Sign Language as incomplete a non-language
  • Homogenization
  • Legitimization of spoken language, delegitimization of signed languages.
  • Coercion
  • Linguicism
  • Attempted Linguistic genocide

7. Effects of this discourse, and of similar discourses from the time;

  • Sign Language banned linguistic oppression
  • Oralist movement
  • Education changes - Focus on English (spoken language) not other subjects
  • Linguistic imperialism
  • Negative stereotyping, otherisation and eugenics
  • Shame through hegemony

A Deaf-Mute Community: Prof. Bell Suggests Legislation By Congress (Dec 1884).The New York Times.Retrieved October 4, 2009 fromhttp://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?_r =1&res=9C02E3DD1F3BE033A25752C3A9649D94659FD7CF 8. Text 2 This Bill is necessary. A lack of recognition of New Zealand Sign Language leads to serious barriers to information and services and therefore unacceptable injustices for Deaf people. It offers improved access to information and services that hearing people take for granted. It provides acknowledgement of Deaf peoples language and culture. New Zealand Sign language is part of our rich cultural diversity. Around 28,000 people, of whom 7,000 are Deaf, use it. It is a language native to our country. It has a unique linguistic structure and includes signs that express concepts from Maori culture. Deaf people comprise a distinct and dynamic cultural group in our country. Their language is central to their culture. Language and culture go hand in hand, and by our recognition of New Zealand Sign Language we give due recognition to Deaf Culture. Dyson, R., (2006)New Zealand Sign Language Bill Third Reading Speech.Retrieved October 2, 2008, fromhttp://www.beehive.govt.nz/node/25407 9. Discourses identified in this text:

  • New Zealand Sign Language as a valid, unique language
  • Recognition of Deaf Culture
  • Belonging to New Zealand
  • Legitimization
  • Non-essentialism
  • Coercion
  • Counter discourse to other mainstream discourses from 1880- mid-late 20 thCentury

New Zealand Office for Disability Issues. (n.d)New Zealand Sign Language Act 2006 . Retrieved October 4, 2009 fromhttp://www.odi.govt.nz/what-we-do/nzsl/index.html 10. Effects of this discourse, and of similar discourses from the time;

  • New Zealand Sign Language Act 2006
  • Annual Sign Language Week
  • Access to information for Deaf people
  • Education bilingual-bicultural
  • Emergence of NZSL/Deaf culture curriculums
  • Pride of NZSL and gradual public awareness

11. Bibliography

  • A Deaf-Mute Community: Prof. Bell Suggests Legislation By Congress (Dec 1884).The New York Times.Retrieved October 4, 2009 fromhttp://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?_r =1&res=9C02E3DD1F3BE033A25752C3A9649D94659FD7CF
  • Carbine, J (2001). Unmarried motherhood 1830-1990: A genealogical analysis. In M. Wetherall, S. Taylor & S. Yates (Eds.)Discourse theory and practice: A reader(pp.267-274). London: Harvester Wheatsheaf
  • Dyson, R., (2006)New Zealand Sign Language Bill Third Reading Speech.Retrieved October 2, 2008, fromhttp://www.beehive.govt.nz/node/25407
  • Lane, H. (1999).The mask of benevolence: disabling the Deaf community(2nd ed),San Diego, CA: DawnSignPress
  • New Zealand Office for Disability Issues. (n.d)New Zealand Sign Language Act 2006 . Retrieved October 4, 2009 fromhttp://www.odi.govt.nz/what-we-do/nzsl/index.html