jenny & sue

john, jenny, sue

John was not the only deaf student I worked with. I worked with "Sue" and "Jenny," both of whom knew John. Sue attends this university and is in her second year while Jenny attends the local community college and studies cosmetology. Comparing Sue and Jenny with John brings critical depth as well as context to my characterization of John. Born and raised in the same city as the large university, John avoids his home community. He left the small southwestern city for a few years to pursue a Junior College degree but returned to complete his Baccalaureate. Interestingly, John is a minor celebrity within this city's Deaf community, having appeared in commercials for a local grocery chain. However, John will have as little to do with the local Deaf community as he can. He has reported to me in interviews that he sees himself at the border between hearing and Deaf culture and is critical of the term "Deaf culture." He claims that Deaf individuals need both the hearing and Deaf worlds. However, John's actions seem to betray his assertion because he has abandoned his local Deaf community. Clearly, the situation is not as simple as I have sketched here yet there is an interestingly and sadly uneasy relationship between the on- and off-campus Deaf communities. John would not elaborate on his relationship with the local deaf community and so I spoke with Sue and Jenny about their relationships with on- and off-campus deaf communities.

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john in context | jenny & sue
deaf:audist | hearing pedagogy | enfi | techno-teaching
city on the hill | "othered" outside
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