Song Without Words: Discovering My Deafness Halfway Through Life

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Da Capo Press, 2013 - Biography & Autobiography - 308 pages
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Much has been written about the profoundly deaf, but the lives of the nearly 30 million partially deaf people in the United States today remain hidden.Song without Words tells the astonishing story of a man who, at the age of thirty-four, discovered that he had been deaf since childhood, yet somehow managed to navigate his way through Andover, Yale, and Columbia Law School, and to establish a prestigious international legal career.

Gerald Shea’s witty and candid memoir of how he compensated for his deafness--through sheer determination and an amazing ability to translate the melody of vowels. His experience gives fascinating new insight into the nature and significance of language, the meaning of deafness, the fierce controversy between advocates of signing and of oral education, and the longing for full communication that unites us all.
 

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Contents

6
56
LANGUAGE IN AIR LANGUAGE
62
THE SOUNDS OF SILENCE
71
GLASS STEEL AND BABEL
86
ALLNIGHTERS AND ULCERS
96
FRIENDS AND FOES
111
PARIS IN LYRICALS
125
SHEAS NOT GETTING IT
146
LILACS AND MINARETS
208
INTERNATIONAL COUNSEL
220
PRAGUE BUDAPEST AND THE LIMITS OF TECHNOLOGY
229
LIFE AS A LYRICAL?
253
FREEDOM
263
A SECOND PEACE
282
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
289
FURTHER READING
292

A BRAIN ON OVERTIME
163
HEARING AIDS AT LAST
171
THE WIND IN THE WILLOWS
185
ALMOST WHOLE
197
INDEX
298
111
301
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
308
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About the author (2013)

Gerald Shea was born in New York City and has lived most of his life in New York and in Paris. He practiced law in both cities for many years with Debevoise & Plimpton as a member of the New York and Paris bars. He is a graduate of Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts, Yale University and Columbia Law School.

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