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Book: "Growing up Hearing in Deaf World"

Re-released in 2006 by Gallaudet University Press, the book "In Silence: Growing up Hearing in a Deaf World" by Ruth Sidranksys shares an account of growing up as the hearing daughter of deaf Jewish parents in the Bronx and Brooklyn during the 1930s and 1940s.

Sidranksys reveals the challenges deaf people faced during the Depression and afterward. Inside her family's apartment, she knew a warm, secure place and recalls her earliest memories of her parents communicating in sign language.

She remembers her father entertaining the family endlessly with his stories, and her mother's story of tying a red ribbon to herself and her infant daughter to know when she needed anything in the night. Outside the apartment, the cacophonous hearing world greeted Sidranskys family with stark stares of curiosity as though they were freaks. Always upbeat, her proud father still found it hard to earn a living. When Sidransky started school, she was placed in a class for special needs children until the principal realized that she could hear and speak.

Sidransky portrays her family with deep affection and honesty, and her frank account provides a living narrative of the Deaf experience in pre- and post-World War II America. In Silence has become an invaluable chronicle of a special time and place that will affect all who read it for years to come.

Information on the book is listed on Gallaudet University Press at http://gupress.gallaudet.edu/bookpage/ISbookpage.html

Story written by Child of Deaf Jewish Parents

Dvora Shurman was a hearing child with two deaf parents, Jewish immigrants from Russia, who met in Chicago after World War I. Both of her parents were educated orally, declaring "I am not born deaf. Signing only for born-deaf." Dvora lived a dual life in the deaf and hearing worlds. She saw herself as her deaf parents' ears, their voice to the hearing world, and as sharing with her mother the task of being a mother.

Early in her life, Dvora Shurman adopted a slogan with her sister, "It's Not Fair,' to rebel against the shaming, the demeaning, our family suffered."

She shares her story along with another woman, Mary V. Rivers, in a book "Deaf Lives in Contrast: Two Women's Stories" published 2008, 272 pages, soft cover.

The book is available through Harris Communications at http://www.harriscomm.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=19597&hcCsid=35f7a10b6d0723ce57b801acfff0571c

Jewish Deaf UK Organization is active

Jewish Deaf Association (JDA), a registered charity in London, announced a "Sizzling Salsa Chanukah Party" at Liberal Jewish Synagogue in London on December 13th. Established in 1948, JDA has a Technology & Information Centre, a social club, social lounge with internet cafe, computer training courses, celebration of Jewish festivals, provides access to synagogue services, and publicizes Jewish cultural activities.

JDA also provides social groups for deaf and hard of hearing youth in 20's and 30's age range, hearing aid consultations, sign language classes and deaf awareness training sessions.
The JDA website URL is http://www.jewishdeaf.org.uk

New Jersey Temple Welcomes Deaf

Temple Avodat Shalom holds its annual Chanukah dinner, followed by a family service that is sign-language interpreted. Non-members welcome.

Information/reservations, (201) 489-2463 or http://www.avodatshalom.net



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