Did you know that American Sign Language has regional dialects and slang just like American English? How about the fact that Deaf individuals often use “name signs” for one another? Name signs work like nicknames so people don’t have to fingerspell their full name all the time.
Now, did you know that there’s a difference between the word “deaf” with a lowercase d and “Deaf” with a capital D? Lowercase d deaf is used as a general and medical term, whereas Deaf with a capital D is a social and cultural identity. Deaf History Month (running from March 13 – April 15) celebrates the achievements and differences of d/Deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals. Deaf History Month was first introduced by the National Association of the Deaf (NAD) in 1996, and in 2006 NAD worked with the American Library Association to encourage government institutions, elected officials, and local libraries to celebrate this month.
Why not use this time of recognition to learn more about Deaf History and culture from some of the eBooks and e-materials below? To learn more about Deaf History Month itself, check out the National Association of the Deaf’s website.
Interested in learning ASL? With your library card, you can access Mango Languages online for free!