Artefact of Popular Culture; the Cochlear Implant

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An artefact that plays a major part in my popular culture is the “Cochlear Implant”. A Cochlear implant is an electronic device that has been surgically implanted to help a person who is profoundly deaf, or severely hard of hearing to receive sound. These devices are made to replace the sensory hair cells in the cochlear of which have been damaged, the Cochlear Implant enables sufficient amount of hearing, allowing a better understanding of speech. However the quality of the sound is different from natural hearing, as less sound information is being received and processed by the brain. I have a Cochlear Implant (or CI for short) myself, making it a major part of my popular culture experience. The Cochlear implant is recognised as a “cure” for deafness; however there is commotion from the “Deaf” culture that the CI is a threat to their culture and their form of communication, sign language. I disagree and believe that the CI is an optional cure for deafness not a threat to their culture. The CI reflects back onto three main theories; Progress and Globalization, Roots and routes of identity and Deaf culture. These are three theories will be used to discuss why the CI is a part of my popular culture following by a conclusion that the CI is a optional cure for deafness that will not intrude with the “Deaf culture”.

Cochlear implants characterize progress and globalization because they are a technology which attempts to “cure” deafness. The study by Wheeler, Archbold, Gregory, Skipp (2007) concludes “Cochlear implantation is a relatively new procedure, which has already had significant impact on the lives of many profoundly deaf children and adults, in providing useful hearing to those unable to benefit significantly from hearing aids”. The Cochlear implant holds effect in how I interact with society, with out the Cochlear implant I would be profoundly deaf and there for feel too inadequate to socialize among others. The CI has also helped others to understand...
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