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Accepted Paper:

Emancipation processes in deaf communities: how the visual exchange of knowledge on more fortunate life circumstances can compensate for local limiting structures  
Goedele De Clerck (Ghent University)

Paper long abstract:

In a literature review of studies on identity dynamics in deaf communities in northwestern Europe a three-stages model of emancipation comes to the fore. These trends are intimately tied to changes in policy and a broader use of sign language in realms of family, education, employment and larger society. An exploratory case study of identity dynamics in Flemish deaf role models, the model of emancipation, and the situation of the Flemish case into this model provide insight into the phenomenon of deaf people's awakening: the politicization of deaf identities that is currently going on in western deaf communities. It also throws a light on the role of global-local interaction and informal, transnational deaf networks of socialization and identification in deaf people's identity dynamics and agency. The visual exchange of emancipatory knowledge can be perceived as a deaf way of education that compensates for oppressive political, cultural, social and educational structures.

Panel W101
Politics of disability and experience
  Session 1