Wednesday, November 02, 2016

What does the sea sound like?

What Does the Sea Sound Like?

Memoirs of a CODA (Child of Deaf Adults)

 Evie Mahoney

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Publisher: Mary Egan Publishing
Release date: 29 October 2016
Category: Autobiography
Paperback: 150 pages
RRP: $30.00
A CODA (Child of Deaf Adults) is a hearing child who is raised by Deaf parents. CODAs are, in effect, bicultural - living in two distinct cultures; that of the Deaf and of the Hearing. This books gives us a fascinating insight into both cultures, from a unique New Zealand perspective.
Evie Mahoney and her five hearing siblings were raised by two deaf parents in Auckland, New Zealand. As a CODA (Child of Deaf Adults), and the eldest, she lived much of her early life in a largely deaf environment.
Sensitive to how hearing people outside that environment reacted to her family, she lived on the edge between two cultures and slipped naturally into the role of interpreter from a young age, ensuring the Deaf and Hearing understood each other. Her way of communicating with the Deaf was by lip reading and improvised signs, as she did not know formal sign language.
Evie_Small.jpgEvie learned the values of her deaf parents and their perception of the mainstream hearing world, feeling how they sometimes felt and thinking like they did, and at the same time learning the values of the hearing world that she belonged to.

Six decades later, Evie is happy to have been raised by inspirational parents and enjoys the unique perspective that the deaf culture has given her. She has seen improvements in communication for the deaf, with New Zealand Sign Language now an official language becoming more widely used, and technology providing more avenues to communicate visually. However, Evie sees attitudes of the Hearing towards the Deaf still having a long way to go towards awareness and acceptance of people who cannot hear.

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