This book is actually a collection of three separate but related essays concerning the deaf, brain development, and some of the politics around how the deaf learn. It is very interesting from the perpsective of a new parent interested in teaching his or her child sign language, regardless of whether or not the child or parent is hearing impaired. However, it is not nearly so anectdotal as his other works. If you are looking for strictly the strange or bizarre, this is not the book for you. If you are curious about how the brain develops language, particularly spatial versus oral, this book is worth the read.
I had already read this book from my public library and found it to be so concise and informative, I decided I needed a copy for my personal library. Oliver Sacks really takes you on a journey from complete ignorance of the hearing impairments and Deaf culture, to a fairly knowledgeable grasp of both in a short space of time. This is a great read for someone wanting to have a deeper understanding of hearing loss, ASL (the language of the Deaf in America) and the culture within a culture that exists among native signers. I found it also gave me a greater understanding of these things and is an informative resource for me, as a Sign Language Interpreter.
What a great book! This really opened my eyes to the difficulties of the formation of thought for the congenitally deaf. The incredible similarities between the brain function when using a spoken language and when using a sign language really blew me away.
I have been around the Deaf for many many years.
I have to say this book did not do it justice. It more approached Deafness from the standpoint of "those poor people who can't hear" than a culture.
I especially hate how this author is an "expert" despite that fact that he has no real involvement in the Deaf community.
Definitely not my fav. read, and I wouldn't go for this book if you are earnestly looking for an accurate portrayal of Deaf Culture.