Journal Article

Toward a Theory of Deaf Ethnos: Deafnicity ≈ <i>D</i>/deaf (Hómaemon • Homóglosson • Homóthreskon)

Richard Clark Eckert

in The Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education

Volume 15, issue 4, pages 317-333
Published in print January 2010 | ISSN: 1081-4159
Published online June 2010 | e-ISSN: 1465-7325 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/deafed/enq022
Toward a Theory of Deaf Ethnos: Deafnicity ≈ D/deaf (Hómaemon • Homóglosson • Homóthreskon)

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Should ethnicity be used to interpret relations between the Deaf community and the hearing people? Recent scholarship questioning the merits of Deaf ethnicity suggests a need to reexamine the use of ethnicity when describing Deaf identity and culture. This article provides an overview of key contributions to race and ethnicity discourse in the 20th century, identifies epistemological and ontological errors to avoid, suggests adherence to the classical Greek concept of ethnos as an alternative to ethnie, and argues for the continuing significance of Deaf ethnicity. Specifically, I propose that Deaf ethnicity is a triadic relational nexus that approximates communities of origin, language, and religion. This is expressed as Deafnicity ≈ D/deaf (Hómaemon • Homóglosson • Homóthreskon). Deafnicity offers a promising alternative for examining relations between Deaf and hearing communities, exploring variance between nationalized Deaf communities, and expanding our understanding of audism.

Journal Article.  10444 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Education ; Linguistics ; Teaching of Specific Groups and Special Educational Needs

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