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When the Mind Hears: A History of the Deaf

3.81  ·  Rating Details  ·  160 Ratings  ·  20 Reviews
The authoritative statement on the deaf, their education, and their struggle against prejudice.


From the Trade Paperback edition.
ebook, 560 pages
Published August 4th 2010 by Vintage (first published January 1st 1984)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 414)
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Sarah
Nov 07, 2007 Sarah rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone interested in Deaf history, culture, and ASL
Hearing people need to do a lot more listening and stop assuming that we know what is best for everyone. This is a fascinating history of deaf education in Europe and the US.
Jessiane
Jan 29, 2008 Jessiane rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone interested or affected by deafness
Recommended to Jessiane by: Class materials for ASL
Again, I read this for ASL. I thought it was very insightful into deaf culture and their history. How all the varied approaches to the deaf have come about and again, how we shouldn't decide for everyone who is deaf what is best for them, especially if you don't even now someone personally who is deaf.
ShaLisa
Mar 04, 2015 ShaLisa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reread
This was required reading for me years ago when I was taking an ASL class. Currently my daughter and I are learning/relearning sign and my daughter wanted to write a paper about the deaf culture for an assignment. I recalled this book and some of its insights and decided to purchase and read this book for a second time. There is so much to know and understand and I appreciate this book, its depth and thoughts. I learned much reading it a second time.

I did not read this book to critique the book
...more
Danielle
I just started this book but quite a few things have stood out. For instance, we need to see the deaf as having a language barrier and not a disability.
Amy Rae
If you enjoy narrative non-fiction, you might well enjoy When the Mind Hears far more than I did. As I get older, I get more and more curmudgeonly about books like these; I don't need a history book to read like a novel before I give a damn, and in fact, it often puts me off.

While Lane's choice to write in a long-dead man's voice makes a striking point about the nature of history as a carefully told narrative (echoed by the way he very consciously writes as himself at the end of the book), it's
...more
Sue Bridgwater
Jan 12, 2016 Sue Bridgwater rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In order to gain real insight into Deafness and Deaf Culture you must read this book, along with Seeing Voices by Oliver Sacks and Understanding Deaf Culture; in search of Deafhood by Paddy Ladd.
James
I have already studied the history of sign language, deaf culture, and deaf education. So the history points were not that much of a learning point for me. I read this to prepare for my interpretation certification test. It is ok. I can see how someone who hasn"t learned the history would find this book facinsating (so for those of you who dont know , then read it ). I already knew that so I was looking at the writing. I thought it was interesting that he wrote from Clerc's point of view but bey ...more
Trisha
Sep 27, 2012 Trisha rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Harlan Lane is a phenomenal author. I think that anyone who actually knows Deaf culture and history (and has a passion for it) will love this book. In fact, I think the more you know about it, the more inspiring this book will be. The people I've heard complain about this book are usually novice ASL students who do not know the language, culture, and history of the Deaf (and are required to read it for class). Don't let the size of the book scare you off. If you are really interested in Deaf cul ...more
Kathleen
May 30, 2009 Kathleen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those interested in the Deafness, American Sign Language and the history of both.
Recommended to Kathleen by: College Professors
I am giving this book 5 stars because it is full of SO MUCH information. Reading the book was slow for me since I normally read stories not informational books. I would read a few chapters, set it down for a while and come back. I when I finished the entire book I felt acomplished. :) hehe. This is a must read for anyone interesting in the history of American Sign Language and Deafness.
Ben
Nov 30, 2012 Ben rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the true story of Deaf history in America, it is a great but frustrating book. Frustrating because idiotic people throughout time try again and again to force oralism on the Deaf and destroy everything that has been worked for. There is much to be gained from this book and I would recommend it to anyone.
Glenda
May 19, 2015 Glenda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Whew! Read this with my ASL III students. Long and challenging read, but quite an interesting detailed journey on the history and underpinnings of Deaf education. Nothing is sacred from politics and shenanigans!
Bailey
Dec 02, 2012 Bailey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A really great book, packed with history, information, and perspective. I am rating it four stars only because it can get a little slow at times. Otherwise, phenomenally written and passionately persuasive.
Yvonne
Jun 04, 2012 Yvonne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: pre-2005
I enjoyed this book the first time I read it in college but the second reading fascinated me. Maybe that's the difference in required reading and reading for pleasure
Christine
Jul 13, 2012 Christine rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: deaf
It is a history of deaf people. There were few things I didn't know prior to reading this book. This book is a keeper.
Aubrie
Apr 30, 2009 Aubrie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It can be long and a bit lugubrious at times but over all it's better than reading a text book on Deaf history.
Gaile
Jun 13, 2012 Gaile rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you want to satisfy your curiosity as to how and why we are what we are, this one has all the information.
Rachel
Apr 15, 2009 Rachel rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book had far too many details for my taste, but other than that it was pretty good.
Lauren
Jul 23, 2008 Lauren rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book has a lot of great information, but not great writing.
Claire
May 20, 2013 Claire rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Full of information and detail. A lot to take in.
Critical Hysteria
Dec 29, 2009 Critical Hysteria rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
still waiting for the audiobook
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Harlan Lane is a Professor of Psychology at Northeastern University. His research focuses on speech production and perception in hearing and deaf people and on the culture, history and manual language of the deaf world.

--from the author's website
More about Harlan Lane...

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