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Deaf Deaf World is a free immersive simulation where attendees navigate a world in which everyone else is Deaf. We will set up in WVU’s Downtown Library, and non-Deaf participants will move from station to station, interacting with Deaf workers. At each step along the way, participants will be asked to perform routine tasks that are often taken for granted, such as requesting a loan from the bank, learning about insurance, attending a doctor’s appointment, purchasing a coffee from the coffee shop, responding to a public safety emergency, and so forth. This is all conducted in a silent environment without the aid of spoken language. To communicate, participants may use white boards, the notes app on their phones, non-verbal communication, and so forth, but they cannot speak.

This event will provide insight into Deaf language, culture, and community, but the goal is also to help participants experience and appreciate the ways in which a person’s cultural experience varies depending on their Disability status. In this way, Deaf Deaf World is a significant health humanities event, particularly as it pertains to demonstrating the social model of Disability.

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