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Nov. 4, 2015

Los Angeles, CA (Nov. 4, 2015) Since its start in the 1960s, Deaf Studies has been impacted by the political activism of Deaf communities, significant advancements in technologies and medicine, and broadened knowledge in interdisciplinary disciplines such as Deaf culture, signed languages and deaf bilingual education. Now a developed field of study at many colleges and universities, Deaf Studies is taking its place among other critical disciplines in the social sciences. Dedicated to the scholarship of Deaf people and Deaf communities worldwide, SAGE today announces the launch of The SAGE Deaf Studies Encyclopedia. With 350 entries, the three-volume set applies a Deaf-centric perspective on a range of multidisciplinary academic fields and combines research with political and cultural inquiry.

Editors Dr. Genie Gertz and Dr. Patrick Boudreault of Gallaudet University commented, "This new encyclopedia shifts focus away from the medical model that has viewed deaf individuals as needing to be remedied in order to correct so-called hearing and speaking deficiencies for the sole purpose of assimilation into mainstream society. The SAGE Deaf Studies Encyclopedia endeavors to carve out a critical perspective on Deaf Studies with a focus on the Deaf as members of a distinct cultural and linguistic group defined by a unique and vibrant history, community and way of being."

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Robert Panara, 94, a scholar in the field of deaf studies, a writer and poet, and a professor at institutions including Gallaudet University in Washington and the National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID) in Rochester, N.Y., died Sunday at a nursing home in Rochester. He had heart ailments, said his son, John.

Growing up in Depression-era New York, Mr. Panara, who lost his hearing before he turned 10 - a casualty of spinal meningitis - received few of the services or accommodations available today for deaf or hard of hearing students. He was educated in mainstream public school classrooms.

He attended Gallaudet, focusing on literature, and taught there for nearly two decades before becoming the first deaf professor at NTID. Beginning in the 1970s, he wrote articles and books that helped establish deaf studies as a formal line of academic inquiry.


Washington Post Article 
By Emily Langer

"Robert Panara, writer, poet, professor and pioneer of deaf studies, dies at 94"

Robert Panara could not hear the noise in Yankee Stadium the day in 1931 when Babe Ruth emerged from the dugout, strode toward him and extended his hand. Mr. Panara, then 10 years old, was deaf. He had lost his hearing several months earlier  . . .

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