South African Sign Language (SASL) is the language used by most members of the Deaf community in South Africa. SASL, much like other signed languages, has a long history of development, acceptance, and non-acceptance. The history of SASL is undeniably intertwined and affected by the political history of South Africa. This article examines the relationship between ethnicity, language, and identity in the context of South African Sign Language and the Deaf community. It seeks to understand how the use of South African Sign Language as one’s main language affects one’s identity and their identification with their racial group. The article looks at the perspectives and stories of individual members of the Deaf community in Cape Town to come to a conclusion about the initial question: Does regular use of South African Sign Language and membership in the Deaf community affect one’s identity with a racial or ethnic group?
Civic and Community Engagement | Inequality and Stratification | Race and Ethnicity | Speech Pathology and Audiology
Quach, Leanna, "Deaf or [insert ethnicity here]? The impact of South African Sign Language and Deaf community membership on the ethnic identities of three Deaf students in Cape Town" (2016). Independent Study Project (ISP) Collection. 2364.