The Deaf House is Joanne Weber’s life story. It illustrates the work and passion of a woman who grew up deaf and became an advocate for the deaf. It is a story of pain, loss and defeat balanced with joy, gain, and victory.
Joanne Weber’s creative memoir, shows how deafness can be a brutal oppression of the mind. Her torment of not knowing exactly where she belonged in Deaf culture is revealed with blunt honesty, and in facing it, she constructed in her imagination “a deaf house”, where deafness was a sense of personhood, not a hearing loss, and language could be scorned and dismissed. After much internal turmoil, Weber realized that her inherent identity was that of a Deaf individual. The Deaf House details the struggles that resulted from her fierce attempt to protect that identity.
Combining the narrative tools of a novelist with those of a documentarian, Weber effectively provides the reader with rare insight and profound truths about the lives of the deaf. It is a powerful story of an indomitable woman’s desire to discover her true self.
“The Deaf House is an absolute must-read for every reader, especially parents of deaf and hard of hearing children, educators and administrators in the areas of deaf education, special education, and educational policy.” — Gary Malkowski, L.H.D., formerly North America’s only Deaf Parliamentarian
“In scene after poignant scene, Joanne Weber maps not only the deaf body, but also a woman’s life with its triumphs and sorrows. This is a love story and a family story, evoking both laughter and tears — above all, it is a human story.” — Jeanette Lynes, author of Archive of the Undressed