Deafening music: Transcending sound in musicking

Autor/a: ROBINSON, Octavian
Año: 2018
Editorial: Journal of American Sign Languages and Literatures
Tipo de código: Copyright
Soporte: Vídeo digital


Comunidad y cultura sorda


This issue is only the beginning of what we hope to be a robust discourse among our contributors and audience of nondeaf and deaf scholars, deaf musicians, sign language teachers and interpreters, and deaf people as appreciators of music. Recently, the popularity of YouTube has raised a generation of people using the online format to produce and distribute videos of spoken language songs translated into sign and signed artistic products some classify as music. The popularity of translated songs and signed music has generated debate on social media and in professional association meetings among deaf people. Concerns are raised about the cultural appropriation of sign language and deaf culture. Some question the success of nondeaf people in monetizing signed music while deaf people continue to 1 The notions of deaf people and music may appear antithetical. After all, the most common trope for deafness in popular culture is silence while music is seemingly the opposite of silence. Is music not noise somehow arranged in a manner pleasing to the ear? Common attitudes about music reveals a pervasive phonocentrism and perpetuates audism. Such attitudes suggest deaf people should be pitied because music is absent from their lives or insist that no culture is complete without music. An examination of music through deaf prisms disrupts such ideas. DEAF MUSICKING Both nondeaf and deaf scholars have suggested deaf bodies as a site for understanding how 2 1 Irene Leigh, et al, 2016. 2 Jeannette Jones, 2015; all authors in this volume. 3 Musicking suggests that music is an action, not a thing. Music can be either the action of creating music or setting something to music. For further discussion, see Christopher Small’s Musicking: The Meanings of Performing and Listening. encounter socioeconomic barriers. working with signed music in teaching sign language. Music has emerged as a contested site of culture, language, identity, and belonging.