THE MASK OF BENEVOLENCE

DISABLING THE DEAF COMMUNITY

Lane (Psychology/Northeastern) follows up When the Mind Hears- -his 1984 history of the deaf—with an excoriating analysis of the oppression of the deaf in contemporary society. Hearing people, Lane says, view deafness as a disability—but the deaf see themselves as a linguistic minority, feel that they have a richer social life than hearing people, marry each other, and celebrate the birth of a deaf child as a precious gift. After developing these preconception-shattering revelations, Lane reveals the meshes of paternalistic control exercised by ``audism''—that institution of school administrators, speech therapists, psychologists, and social workers that authorizes views of the deaf, governs where they go to school, and exercises authority over their community. Despite research showing that American Sign Language is a natural language with its own vocabulary, grammar, and art forms, professionals persist in viewing it as disabled English and refuse to learn it. The consequences for the deaf are dire: IQ scores can be lowered 30 points by examiners resorting to ad hoc pantomime for test instruction; psychologists administer tests designed for the hearing and misdiagnose deaf children as learning-disabled; deaf youth are ``mainstreamed'' out of special schools to languish in a hearing, English-speaking environment. The audist establishment, Lane says, has promulgated calling deaf children ``hearing-impaired''—the equivalent, he adds, of calling women ``non-men'' or gays ``sexually impaired.'' And economic self- interest motivates the audist establishment, Lane argues. The hearing-aid industry, for example, annually sells $250 million dollars' worth of hearing aids to deaf children, whose teachers require them. Yet virtually all of these children went deaf before learning English, making the hearing aids useless. What is to be done to empower the deaf? Allow them their language, Lane says, and their history and their dignity. Essential for anyone with a deaf person in his or her life, or for anyone who wishes truly to understand two million deaf fellow Americans.

Pub Date: May 26, 1992

ISBN: 0-679-40462-7

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1992

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THE ABOLITION OF MAN

The sub-title of this book is "Reflections on Education with Special Reference to the Teaching of English in the Upper Forms of Schools." But one finds in it little about education, and less about the teaching of English. Nor is this volume a defense of the Christian faith similar to other books from the pen of C. S. Lewis. The three lectures comprising the book are rather rambling talks about life and literature and philosophy. Those who have come to expect from Lewis penetrating satire and a subtle sense of humor, used to buttress a real Christian faith, will be disappointed.

Pub Date: April 8, 1947

ISBN: 1609421477

Page Count: -

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 17, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1947

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Moving and motivating—a must-read for practicing professionals and would-be musicians.

STRINGS ATTACHED

ONE TOUGH TEACHER AND THE GIFT OF GREAT EXPECTATIONS

Inspirational lessons from the life of one tough teacher.

Today’s parents who lament their children stressing over tests may be horrified by the themes of tough love and tenacity offered by this biographical tribute to the late Jerry Kupchynsky, “Mr. K,” a gifted high school strings teacher from East Brunswick, N.J., whose exacting methods helped spawn the careers of generations of musicians and educators. Journalist Lipman and Kupchynsky, a violinist and Mr. K’s daughter, met as children when Mr. K joined his daughter’s exceptional talents on violin with Lipman’s on viola to form half of a string quartet that would also include Kupchynsky’s younger sister, whose disappearance decades later reunited the authors. The bond forged through the intensity of creating music is but one of the storylines running through this engrossing account of Mr. K’s life. Born in 1928 in the Ukraine, Mr. K endured a litany of wartime atrocities before immigrating to the United States as a refugee in 1946. But prior to fleeing to the U.S., it was the sound of a German soldier playing the violin that sparked his love for classical music. Surviving these early hardships helped instill in Mr. K an appreciation of adversity as a motivator, an unflagging belief in the value of hard work and a willingness to fight for the underdog. With a booming Ukrainian accent and “trim” mustache, Mr. K’s battle-ax demeanor and perfectionist drive struck both fear and a ferocious desire to succeed in the hearts of his pupils. One of his more unforgiving approaches involved singling out a section’s weakest player—“Who eez deaf in first violins?”—and forcing the guilty party to play alone with a stronger player until the weak one improved. While tactics like these may not have earned his students’ immediate devotion, they never forgot him and often found they could achieve more than they ever dreamed.

Moving and motivating—a must-read for practicing professionals and would-be musicians.

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2013

ISBN: 978-1-4013-2466-7

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Hyperion

Review Posted Online: Aug. 18, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 2013

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