Deaf Epistemologies

Multiple Perspectives on the Acquisition of Knowledge

1st Edition

Edited by Peter V. Paul & Donald F. Moores

Imprint: Gallaudet University Press
Hardcover : 9781563685255, 320 pages, April 2012
Ebook : 9781563685262, 320 pages, April 2012
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In this groundbreaking volume, a dozen noted scholars and researchers examine the many ways that deaf people see and acquire deaf knowledge.



Epistemology is the study of how “knowledge” is formed. Standard epistemology isolates the “known” from the “knowers,” thereby defining “knowledge” as objectively constant. Multiple epistemologies suggest that individuals learn in different ways shaped by life factors such as education, family, ethnicity, history, and regional beliefs. In this groundbreaking volume, editors Peter V. Paul and Donald F. Moores call on ten other noted scholars and researchers to join them in examining the many ways that deaf people see and acquire deaf knowledge.

       This collection considers three major groups of deaf knowledge perspectives: sociological and anthropological, historical/psychological and literary, and educational and philosophical. The first explores the adoption of a naturalized, critical epistemological stance in evaluating research; the epistemology of a positive deaf identity; how personal epistemologies can help form deaf education policies; and valuing deaf indigenous knowledge in research. The next part considers dueling epistemologies in educating deaf learners; reforms in deaf education; the role of deaf children of hearing parents in creating Deaf epistemologies; and the benefit of reading literature with deaf characters for all students. The final part explores the application of the Qualitative-Similarity Hypothesis to deaf students’ acquisition of knowledge; a metaparadigm for literacy instruction in bilingual-bicultural education; collaborative knowledge-building to access academia; and examination of the benefits and disadvantages of being deaf.


Peter V. Paul is Professor, School of Teaching and Learning (Integrated Teaching & Learning Section), Ohio State University, Columbus, OH.

Donald F. Moores is Professor, Department of Exceptional Student and Deaf Education, University of North Florida, Jacksonville, FL.