Asl History

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1) What was society’s view of Deaf people and sign language in the mid 1800’s through early 1900’s? Are these views the same or different in 2013? As I read about the account of Uncle Charlie, it showed me how the Deaf were considered as a lower class in society then many outclasses. During this time the Deaf were considered to be “dumb and deaf” because they were not able to speak and communicate with society. As Uncle Charlie went to school, which was called the Pennsylvania Institution for the Deaf and Dumb, he’s connection to his family was cut off. Many of these Deaf schools were taught by Hearing people, which had no idea of what it is like to be deaf. At these schools they would teach the “progressive vocational education” as well as “oral vocational education”, they also taught the boys and girls trade skills such as shoe making, tailoring, and printing. No grades were given at these schools in order to keep the students from getting negative thoughts about school. Throughout the 1800’s to the 1900’s, society had a very negative view on Deaf people and sign language. Most of the negative views happened during the 1800’s not the 1900’s. During this time many families would try to make themselves believe that their children became deaf after their birth, in order to ensure themselves that their genetic heredity was not to blame for their child’s deficit. Thou many American families said that their children were deaf at birth, also blaming the genetic heredity for the child’s deafness. Towards the end of the 1900’s, society was more excepting of the Deaf community and Deaf people. The views of Deaf communities in2013 differ then what the 1800’s and 1900’s views were. This is so because today we are more excepting of people’s deficits, and we no longer have the idea that deafness is a disease or illness.

2) What do the authors want hearing people to understand about sign language? The author wanted hearing people to understand that sign language as been...
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