Finished! Deaf Side Story

Deaf Side Story by Mark Rigney

When I checked the book out of the library, I thought it would be comparing spoken language and ASL cultures. Wrong!

Deaf Side Story is about a production of West Side Story done in 2000 at MacMurray College in Illinois. The Drama professor decided to have the Sharks be students from the Illinois School for the Deaf, which was in the same town as the college. The book follows the production from when the professor first has the idea to after the last performance. The author does an amazing job of chronicling all the trials and problems that arise when you are not only dealing with two worlds, but trying to have them together on stage and make sure the audience has full access to the entire show.

It’s a great read for anyone interested in ASL culture. If you have no prior knowledge about it, don’t worry! The author takes the time to explain various aspects of the culture and the language so reader fully understands why things are the way they are. It’s a great book and is a great way of showing that a difference in languages doesn’t have to mean it’s impossible to work together.

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