Gallaudet University Press

10:10 Wednesday, October 29, 2008

150 Years on Kendall Green: Assessing Gallaudet University Through Deaf History

A Diverse Group of Scholars Study Its Various Roles Through Time

In A Fair Chance in the Race of Life: The Role of Gallaudet University in Deaf History, eminent historians Brian H. Greenwald and John Vickery Van Cleve assemble a remarkable cast of scholars to examine the critical importance of Gallaudet University during 150 years of deaf history in America, especially its role in higher education for deaf students.

“Most of the articles that follow,” note Greenwald and Van Cleve, “are critical of Gallaudet’s past and its past leadership. Michael J. Olson, for example, suggests that the school’s first president, Edward Miner Gallaudet, was duplicitous in his dealings with deaf leaders. Lindsey M. Parker finds that both Edward Miner Gallaudet and his deaf male colleagues at Gallaudet were more interested in maintaining gender boundaries than in liberating deaf females. Sandra Jowers-Barber and Marieta Joyner detail the institution’s painful history of oppressing deaf African Americans. Ronald E. Sutcliffe accuses Gallaudet’s leadership, before the 1950s, of collaborating in the oppression of deaf people and limiting their academic achievement, and Benjamin Bahan and Hansel Bauman argue that Gallaudet administrators have designed and constructed physical spaces on Kendall Green that ignore deaf people’s needs.”

“A few articles are not critical. James M. McPherson, for instance, brilliantly situates Gallaudet’s institutional history and nineteenth-century deaf history within the framework of American political and social beliefs and events. Christopher A. N. Kurz and Noah D. Drezner present narratives about the role and value of sign language and English in the curriculum and the school’s complicated financial situation, respectively, without drawing conclusions that criticize the institution. David de Lorenzo applauds Edward Miner Gallaudet’s accomplishments, recognizing the difficulty of planting the seeds that would grow into today’s campus. Christopher Krentz addresses the issue of deaf self-consciousness, and I. King Jordan provides a brief memoir of his presidency, a period that changed Gallaudet forever.”

“Finally, we believe that criticism and praise, when grounded in historical fact and presented coherently, as they are in all of these studies, are both useful as Gallaudet University moves forward and as the deaf community continues to evaluate, redefine, and reconstruct itself.”

Use your exclusive subscriber discount to receive a savings of 20% off when you order A Fair Chance in the Race of Life online or by mail at a special savings of 20%. When ordering online, type “OCT2008” in the box labeled “use promo code” next to the “checkout” button.

Robert C. Johnson and Ross E. Mitchell, along with a diverse corps of education experts and researchers, employ their experiences to examine the impact of the No Child Left Behind legislation and high-stakes testing on deaf students and their education in Testing Deaf Students in an Age of Accountability. Joseph “Jay” Innes, Interim Dean of the College of Professional Studies and Outreach at Gallaudet University, Washington, D.C., introduces this volume by stating, “The chapters in this book address one of the education profession’s most complicated issues—how to conduct fair and equitable assessments of deaf students, particularly during the era of increased accountability mandated by the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). While the focus of the book is the assessment of deaf students, the issues raised and discussed are also applicable to other special populations. In essence, this is a book about achieving social justice by addressing educational policies, practices, and problems that have increasingly complicated the profession’s ability to ensure fairness in testing and equality of opportunity—the latter a fundamental principle of the U.S. Constitution and a right afforded to every citizen.”

Read more about this exciting new collection in chapter 10, “Testing, Accountability, and Equity for Deaf Students in Delaware,” and order Testing Deaf Students in an Age of Accountability at a 20% savings off the regular price. For online orders, type “OCT2008” in the box labeled “use promo code” next to the “checkout” button. You may also order by mail.

“In reading Women and Deafness: Double Visions,” notes Donna E. Gustina, Department of American Sign Language and Interpreting Education, NTID Rochester Institute of Technology in a recent issue of the Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, “I was struck with the seamless way in which the editors presented scholarly work that portrays Deaf women within the historical evolution of Deaf culture. Women and Deafness: Double Visions can quite effectively be used as text for several areas of study. I highly recommend it for Women’s Studies and Deaf Culture Studies as well as Educational and Sociological Studies. This book is for all people interested in where society came from and where we are headed in this world.” In Women and Deafness, a collection of 14 scholars bridge two dynamic fields, Women’s Studies and Deaf Studies, with various chapters on deaf women photographers, analysis of films with deaf women characters, the significance of deaf beauty pageants, and more. Read more about Women and Deafness, and place your order here.

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