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200 Years of Deaf Life In America

March 14, 2007

Remember TO MARK THIS DATE: March 21, 2007

PBS documentary explores 200 years of deaf life in America

“Through Deaf Eyes,” a two-hour PBS documentary exploring nearly 200 years of Deaf life in America, will air early next year. The film was inspired by the exhibition, “History Through Deaf Eyes,” curated by Jack R. Gannon of Gallaudet University.

The documentary will air nationally on PBS on Wednesday, March 21 at 9 p.m. ET (check local listings).

The film presents the shared experiences of American history – family life, education, work, and community connections – from the perspective of deaf citizens. Interviews include community leaders, historians, and deaf Americans with diverse views on language use, technology and identity.

Bringing a Deaf cinematic lens to the film are six artistic works by Deaf media artists and filmmakers: Wayne Betts, Renee Visco, Tracey Salaway, Kimby Caplan, Arthur Luhn, and Adrean Mangiardi.

Poignant, sometimes humorous, these films draw on the media artists’ own lives and are woven throughout the documentary. But the core of the film remains the larger story of Deaf life in America — a story of conflicts, prejudice and affirmation that reaches the heart of what it means to be human.

Major funding for “Through Deaf Eyes” is provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities, Corporation for Public Broadcasting, PBS, The Annenberg Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. Private individuals have also contributed to the funding of this project. The extensive outreach campaign is funded in part by Sign Language Associates. Outreach partners are the National Association for the Deaf, Gallaudet University, the National Technical Institute for the Deaf at Rochester Institute of Technology, and California State University-Northridge. As part of the outreach campaign, numerous local organizations, some in association with their public television stations, will mount events and discussions exploring the issues raised in the film.

A comprehensive Web site, found at http://www.pbs.org <http://www.pbs.org/&gt; , accompanies the film. The site includes interviews with the deaf filmmakers whose work is featured in the documentary, while also inviting viewers to submit their own stories, photographs, and films. These will become part of the archival collection of Gallaudet University. A companion book is being published by Gallaudet University Press.

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Categories: Deaf History
  1. Anonymous
    March 14, 2007 at 12:53 pm

    Thanks for reminding me.

  2. gally grad
    March 15, 2007 at 9:29 pm

    check your local listings. folks in the DC area get to see it on march 21st, followed by a one-hour televised Deaf film fest. altogether 9pm to midnight on WETA.

    but people in other cities will only get the 2-hour documentary, and it can be on different days or times. for example, here in austin it will be on KLRU on april 9th at 8pm (but no film fest afterward).

    jealous, me.

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