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date: 04 June 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter describes deaf experiences of reading, particularly those that occur in signed languages. It explores both visual and tactile methods of signed language reading and analyzes the ways these practices enable alternative theorizations of reading and its potentials as well as the reasons that referring to the processes of decoding signed language utterances as reading is appropriate. Specifically, it focuses on the implications of encountering the human body as text and the relationships between human subjects and language that become possible in such contexts through readings of several ASSL poems including Bernard Bragg’s “Flowers and Moonlight on Spring Water” and “The Pilot and the Eagle,” Ian Sanborn’s “Caterpillar,” and Ayisha Knight-Shaw’s “Until.”

Keywords: deaf, sign language, reading, embodiment, tactile, text, relationality, ethics, ASL

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