Here’s an interesting fact for you.
As you are reading this piece of text you are automatically sounding out the words in your head. You are making sense of the language by transferring the written to sound. Most of you won’t have to use your lips to do so!
This is something that linguists and researchers call “The inner voice” – we use it all the time: when we are thinking, when we are watching telly, reading, writing to a friend – even when we sleep.
Ok – so here’s the twist:
A profoundly Deaf person has no inner voice.
I’m not talking about your granny, who went deaf in her 60s, or even someone who has a reasonable degree of hearing – we’re talking about (mainly) Sign-Language using, profoundly Deaf (note the capital D) for whom a hearing aid is just a worthless piece of plastic.
This goes someway to explaining why Deaf culture is often at odds with the hearing world.
Try to imagine trying to learn to read without that basic ability to translate the words in your head.
Try to imagine what it must be like to exist silently in a world dominated by sound
Then, when you’ve thought about it for a while, go out and learn Sign Language and Deaf Awareness – it’s the least you can do.