Respecting Different Deaf Cultures....(used to be Mouthings- question for Stefan)...

Valerie Sutton sutton at SIGNWRITING.ORG
Tue Aug 19 16:17:24 UTC 2003

SignWriting List
August 19, 2003

On Tuesday, August 19, 2003, at 12:35 AM, Daniel Noelpp wrote:
> So, mouth pictures are a reality here in the German speaking part of
> Switzerland. And Stefan might additionally use them as a teaching
> method to show how to articulate a German word, and not as a part of a
> language. I think mouth pictures are a legimitate counstruct (but not
> liked by the Deaf very well) both in the language itself and as a
> teaching help. Daniel

Dear SW List, Daniel, Ingvild, Stefan, Antony...everyone!

I know that there will always be signed languages in the world. And
there will always be those born-deaf people, like yourself, Daniel, who
have succeeded in learning, reading and writing several spoken
languages. Of course, those people who believe that oralism is the only
way to teach a Deaf child, will point to you and others of your
success, and say "See....We were right...Sign Language is not
necessary...Lip reading is enough...!" But actually, I suspect, no
matter how successful some may be with lip reading, there will always
be signed languages in the world too...Both are forms of communication
that will not die out, is my guess...

Since this is the SignWriting List, let me steer the conversation to a
related topic...How does SignWriting fit into the bigger picture of
deafness and deaf education?...

SignWriting is not a "theory of deaf education"...Actually,
technically, it has nothing to do with deafness either. SignWriting
relates to Sign Language. Sign Languages are used by hearing people as
well as Deaf people...So even if a country goes completely oral in
their training of Deaf students, there will always be a signed language
in that country too...if only in small groups of people...and
SignWriting can be the written form for those signed languages, giving
signers the opportunity to write their poetry, literature and history
directly in their own language..

So SignWriting does not change how people just writes
that communication down so others can read it!

Meanwhile, there are teachers of the Deaf who choose to use SignWriting
in Deaf Education, and it that sense, it then becomes a philosophy
too...namely giving Deaf students respect for their own languages...

Val ;-)

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