Category Archives: Deaf Culture

What is Foreign About ASL?

In schools across the country, American Sign Language is offered as a foreign language. Why is a language which is used by around 500,000 native U.S. citizens taught as foreign? Great question. When we take a look at the prejudices facing Deaf culture, I think this is a good place to start. When ASL gets… Continue Reading

Cultural Divide

“After all the years of silence and rejection; I felt like I had lost my identity,” these powerful words stared at me from my computer screen, bringing tears to my eyes. The author, an individual with degenerative hearing loss, had recently attended an open-to-the-public cultural event I interpreted for. This person was incredibly grateful to… Continue Reading

ASL Interpreters: United We Stand

Thanks to social media, pop culture now spreads more quickly than it ever has before. When video of one interpreter’s incredible ASL interpretations of Wu Tang Clan went viral, I was reminded of what a mixed emotional experience it is when interpreters become memes. It is wonderful to see passionate interpreters out there serving the deaf community, and a… Continue Reading

A Rejuvenating NTID Alumni Weekend

Feedback is the greatest gift an interpreter can receive. Every criticism comes with a chance for growth, and every compliment is an inspiration to be better. The first weekend of May, I was blessed with the opportunity to return to my Alma Mater, RIT National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID), for an Alumni Weekend… Continue Reading

Deafness in the Media

Picture yourself as a child, watching television and absorbing how the world works through modern media. Imagine that none of the people you see reporting news, advertising products, or acting in sitcoms are like you. They don’t speak your language or have the same mannerisms; they don’t even have any friends who are like you!… Continue Reading

Creating Equal Access for the Deaf & Hard of Hearing

Sure staff meetings can be less than thrilling, but imagine you are sitting in a conference room where everyone is speaking a foreign language. For nearly an hour, your brain works overtime to discern even the most mundane aspects of conversation. Or perhaps you are in a class lecture, where the only material you understand… Continue Reading

Raising A Deaf Child

After months of worrying about nursery colors and baby names, the big day has finally arrived! Your healthy bundle of joy is born with 10 fingers and 10 toes; crying and cooing in your arms. The baby is beautiful, your family is complete, everything feels perfect! Fast forward a few months down the road when,… Continue Reading

What merits a great ASL Interpreter?

A quality ASL interpreter might be the difference between a Deaf client loving your proposal, and “giving it somefurther consideration.” Or maybe the difference between the Deaf attendees thinking your play was a masterpiece, verses thinking it was “pretty good.” An interpreter should exhibit the same passion for their job as the person who hires… Continue Reading

Weaving the fabric

As illustrated by the attention I received for interpreting during Hurricane Sandy, deaf communication really fascinates the hearing population! Growing up a Child of Deaf Adults (CODA), it took me a long time to accept the wonderment others experience when they see sign language being used.When I was young, I ‘d become frustrated when patrons… Continue Reading