Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Why some Parodies aren’t Funny

Marlee Matlin writes in the Chicago Sun-Times about why some parodies about the deaf are simply not funny here.

1 comment:

United Deaf Ministries said...

Much has been made of how this interpreter performed her duties. For some, her expressive ASL was over the top and described as making a mockery of sign language. Others would argue that her target language with the intense use of her facial expression was exactly what was needed by a certain segment of the Deaf community. More telling was the attention garnered by political satirist, comedy central and even Saturday Night Live. While it is heartening the see the cherished part of Deaf culture namely sign language being given some attention, it is disheartening to see the misrepresentation of the interpreter as the butt of jokes. Especially the half-baked demonstration done by non-signing individuals who mimic the interpreter by gesturing wildly, using obscene hand movements and being outright disrespectful.

The interpreting field be will sixty years old in 2014, the growth in the profession, in deaf access to education, employment and health care has never been more prevalent. More and more universities and community colleges are offering sign language or some form of sign language interpreting classes. The increased in professional Interpreter has risen threefold over the past ten years. And even in developing countries the main issue for the Deaf community is the quantity and quality of interpreters. The old adage of there is no such thing as bad publicity may not hold true in this case. No community cultural value should be disrespected or marginalized. American Sign Language is an exceptional form of communication and considered the cornerstone of Deaf identity. Like any community, ethnicity or nationality it should be held in the utmost respect.


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