Mean Little Deaf Queer: A Memoir

Front Cover
Beacon Press, 2010 - Social Science - 230 pages
When Terry Galloway was born on Halloween, no one knew that an experimental antibiotic given to her mother had wreaked havoc on her fetal nervous system. After her family moved from Berlin, Germany, to Austin, Texas, hers became a deafening, hallucinatory childhood where everything, including her own body, changed for the worse. But those unwelcome changes awoke in this particular child a dark, defiant humor that fueled her lifelong obsessions with language, duplicity, and performance.

As a ten-year-old self-proclaimed "child freak," she acted out her fury with her boxy hearing aids and Coke-bottle glasses by faking her own drowning at a camp for crippled children. Ever since that first real-life performance, Galloway has used theater, whether onstage or off, to defy and transcend her reality. With disarming candor, Terry writes about her mental breakdowns, her queer identity, and living in a silent, quirky world populated by unforgettable characters. What could have been a bitter litany of complaint is instead an unexpectedly hilarious and affecting take on life.


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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - laurustina - LibraryThing

I liked this book. I wanted to like it more. It's a good read, particularly the first 1/3 which focuses on Galloway's childhood. Her experiences are rich and unique and her storytelling especially ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Lisu - LibraryThing

Autobiographical story of Terry Galloway, who at the age of eight starts to loose the ability to hear. Galloway writes about living in a silent, odd world populated by unforgettable characters. With ... Read full review


Them and
Presto Changeo
The Performance of Drowning
Littled Deaf
On Being Told
Passing Strange
Drag Acts
Jobs for the Deaf
Who Died and What Killed Them

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About the author (2010)

Terry Galloway is the founder of the Actual Lives writing and performance programs; a founding member of Esther’s Follies, Austin’s legendary cabaret; and cofounder of the Mickee Faust Club in Tallahassee, Florida. She divides her time between Austin and Tallahassee.

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