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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

d/Deaf Borderlands: Understanding Identity and Multicultural Experience across the Spectrum of d/Deafness
by Sukimoto, Jack Akira, M.A., California State University, Los Angeles, 2019, 117; 27667719
Abstract (Summary)

Through Deaf Studies and Deaf epistemology there has been a wealth of research conducted in an attempt to understand and conceptualize the experiences and identity of d/Deaf individuals. Recently, the Deaf community is becoming more recognized and represented in both mainstream cultural contexts as well as academic studies. Despite this, there still exists a large gap in the existing literature of d/Deaf topics that ignores or is ignorant to the intersectional and diverse lives of the individuals under the umbrella of Deafness. Existing models of Deaf identity are instrumental in mapping out the nuances of Deaf culture and experience, but further examination shows that our current academic understandings are based largely on a binary system that views Deafness and hearing as two primary entities.

Through my research and interactions with the Deaf community throughout the Southern California region, I conduct interviews with the purpose of sharing the experiences and perspectives of individuals who grapple with these issues of underrepresentation and inadequate models of identity. These stories and analysis conceptualize the lived experiences of individuals who find themselves in–between Deaf and hearing worlds in order to gain a better understanding of identity across this spectrum of Deafness. I also explore the strength of frameworks and concepts such as liminality, the “borderlands” and “Discourse” to highlight the important parallels of Deaf identity, as well as the limits of the concepts such as "DEAF–SAME", and models that value “Deaf” first, and ignore or misunderstand intersectional experiences.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Ngin, ChorSwang
Commitee: Sonnenschein, Aaron H., Riggio, Heidi R., García-Fernández, Carla
School: California State University, Los Angeles
Department: Anthropology
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 81/7(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Cultural anthropology, Social research, Sociolinguistics
Keywords: Borderlands, Deaf, Discourse, Hard of hearing, Liminality, Sign language
Publication Number: 27667719
ISBN: 9781392862285
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