Deaf Culture

The world is experienced differently by people who do not communicate through spoken word.  Deaf culture is a community of people who communicate using Sign Language, be it  American Sign Language (ASL), Langue des signes Québécoise (LSQ) or any of the other variations of visual language.  The culture is not defined by hearing loss, but rather of a shared experience of the world through the use of visual images in place of words.  It is unique, diverse and rich in its history, heritage and experiences.  American Sign Language (ASL) helps to illustrate that history and experience in a way that spoken words simply cannot.  Deaf culture is a way of life and learned ways of acting, feeling and thinking based on a group who share common language, beliefs, values and identity.  For many of those who are Deaf, the culture isn’t so much inherited from birth as it is absorbed and adopted later in life, as people are exposed to more of the Deaf community at large.  Deaf culture is and the Deaf community are always identified with a capital D as it relates to the identity of a group of people.   Array Services owes Deaf culture and the Deaf community a great debt of gratitude in informing our services, approaches and understanding of the needs of those we serve.  It is only through their assistance that we are able to help the people in our service learn more about their culture, community and means to communicate.  For more information about Deaf Culture, please visit the Ontario Association of the Deaf or the Canadian Association of the Deaf