Friday, April 27, 2007

ASL: How much of it do you require to understand?




Jay Krieger wonders how much of ASL would you require to be able to understand? Jay explains his experience using ASL with a deaf-blind friend.

22 comments:

Oscar the Observer said...

I will allow other deaf people to make assumptions and opinions then I will make a video clip response :D. Let the game start!
Hahahaha.

David A. Martin said...

Was it Art Roehrig? He is a great buddy of mine.

Dennis Bacon said...

Wow I learn something more from your experience. Thank you for educating us more what ASL can do anything to any kind of deaf people. Amazing to see what Blind deaf people can do.

ginfpca said...

The person you just described....I think it was and is Art Roehrig....a role model for me! I am DB myself (Usher Syndrome) and still learning out there!!

Anne Marie said...

http://web.mac.com/annemariebaer/iWeb/AnneMariesthought/followingconversation.html

LaRonda said...

Hey! Nice to see you again!

Good post. I remember the first time I met a deaf-blind person. It was at Gallaudet. A mutual friend of ours introduced us. I had been watching how other people communicated with this deaf-blind young man for quite a while and I wanted to have an experience communicating with him as well. Plus, I thought he was a really cool guy!

What I wasn't prepared for was the immediate intimacy of the touch involved with tactile ASL. As his hand was placed on mine by our mutual friend, I began to sign, "Hi! My name is LaRonda."

When I signed "my", this guys hand was on my hand which was on my chest! That's pretty close and personal for the first sentence! Anytime the signs were made on my chest, his hands were right there!

Later, I learned from my friend that this deaf-blind fellow actually got quite a kick out of tactile signs with females as he could determine how "busty" the women were that he was talking with!

We had a great time becoming friends that semester. I agree with you. Tactile ASL is just amazing!

~ LaRonda

todos la vie said...

care to interpret what you said off the frame?

Susan said...

yes that's wonderful, Jay :)

thank you, enjoyed what you shared.

Karen Mayes said...

Wow, that was awesome. I have heard a lot about "radar" related to hearing blind people, but with deaf-blind people, it seems a more heightened sense of radar and a heightened sense of tactile. Shows a different kind of processing of blind-deaf people's brains... amazing.

Moviegirl said...

Thank you for posting this.
Yes, I remember the time when I first met a DeafBlind lady I was SO amazed! She understood everything. It took me a while to build my confidence to go and talk to her and other DeafBlind people. I was amazed by their skills. I agreed with you. They're so amazing! So clever!
Cheers!

kira said...

wow, that's so impressive!

W.F.T. said...

Anne Marie, indeed! Seems like those in the field of ASL Studies, or even ASL linguisitics, could learn a thing or two about the language from the Deaf-Blind!

Belle

BEG said...

The very first deaf meetup I went to, there were several deaf-blind people there. I'd already read some of TactileWorld's posts, and in the back of my mind, was wondering how deaf-blind dealt with signing.

I was just blown away watching them, and also talking with them myself. I have no idea how they can follow fingerspelling, in particular, but they seem to.

haleyfun said...

That's fancinating. Thanks for educating us.

mule4350 said...

Well I heard a lot of DEAF-BLIND and seem comfty herself/himself and undy fingerspeller under a person hand and have feeling as senastive anywhere.

Oscar the Observer said...

Under 8 minutes

Video clip response.

mochame said...

You are lucky had experience with blind person how you saw it everything. Blind people are very smart to know where the leads coming from. Amazing!

Karen Mayes said...

Oscar, interesting vlog. I knew you said before in other vlogs that you were "low vision" but I did not want you meant by it until you explained about your pupils' inability to adjust to the lightness.

I wonder if the blind-deaf or "low vision" as you call yourself, have more comfort with physical contact (like you talked about Europe and America's attitude toward personal space) because they get more understanding through the physical contact, reading the emotions in the contact? We hear and see emotions so it might be enough for us Americans, where we still are influenced by the Pilgrims' philosophy that the physical contact was not healthy? I dunno...

I have seen at how close proximity the interpreters and deaf/blind people and that it ddoes not bother them at all... in fact, they look comfortable and not threatened. I have had friends who had Ushers syndrome and they would hold onto my arm as we walked through the nights on the RIT campus.

We should learn an example from deaf/blind/low vision people when it comes to close physical contact... we should not get uncomfortable. Sadly, there is a lot of emphasis on the importance of personal space in America.

Oscar the Observer said...

It is possible, Karen Mayes. Though it has more to do with our attitudes than our blindness. There are indeed a few deaf blind who can request that it be kept to strict necessity when touching.

Yep, I checked my old video clip and since it was at my early stage of webcam usage, it was very blurry. My pupils' frozen movement is one thing that is wrong, the other two (actually one when you think about it) are that when I see faraway objects or seeing small objects my eyes do not automatically magnify the objects like you people's eyes do. That is why objects faraway and small seem smaller. Luckily I don't have ANY blurry vision, at least.

Anonymous said...

I am not sure about deaf-blind people.

Depending on if your friend was born deaf and knows ASL, he or she became blind much later. He/she would be able to understand ASL with the "plugging hand". However, for those people who were born hearing and became deaf/blind later would not be able to use the "plugging hand" in order to understand ASL. Look at Helen Keller who was born deaf and blind. She would not be able to understand ASL like your friend.

One issue is Should we call your friend late blindened who was born deaf and knows ASL before becoming blind??????

Sandra Goldstein

IamMine said...

I've heard similar stories about deaf-blind people.

I finally saw one at a Deafhood session and I was wondering if s/he had a low vision or completely blind because the interpreters would interpret under his/her hands and when s/he stood up to ask questions (facing the crowd), s/he was signing in ASL.

I guess I always thought the deaf-blind would have their own signs.

Off the point, I heard they could feel "different" colors and identify them. I always wondered about that!

Thanks for enlightening us as usual, Jay. :)

Teri said...

A Wonderful post!

Something refreshing about the deaf!

It always amazes me every time I meet a new deaf-blind person.

Art K. was the first person I met. He sure awed me -- using his hand reading me sign. Awesome!

Deaf-blind peple are EXTRA special! Let's say EXTRAordinary!

Thanks for being so thoughtful and sharing.