||The examples and perspective in this article may not represent a worldwide view of the subject. (May 2013)|
Deafblindness is the condition of little or no useful sight and little or no useful hearing. Educationally, individuals are considered to be deafblind when the combination of their hearing and sight loss causes such severe communication and other developmental and educational needs that they require significant and unique adaptations in their educational programs. One example is Helen Keller.
|This section needs additional citations for verification. (August 2012)|
Deafblind people communicate in many different ways determined by the nature of their condition, the age of onset, and what resources are available to them. For example, someone who grew up deaf and experienced vision loss later in life is likely to use a sign language (in a visually modified or tactual form). Others who grew up blind and later became deaf are more likely to use a tactile mode of their spoken/written language. Methods of communication include:
- Use of residual hearing (speaking clearly, hearing aids) or sight (signing within a restricted visual field, writing with large print).
- Tactile signing, sign language, or a manual alphabet such as the American Manual Alphabet or Deafblind Alphabet (also known as "two-hand manual") with tactile or visual modifications.
- Interpreting services (such as sign language interpreters or communication aides).
- Communication devices such as Tellatouch or its computerized versions known as the TeleBraille and Screen Braille Communicator.
Multisensory methods have been used to help deafblind people enhance their communication skills. These can be taught to very young children with developmental delays (to help with pre-intentional communication), young people with learning difficulties, or older people, including those with dementia. One such process is Tacpac.
Prominent deafblind people
- Francisco Goya (1746 – 1828): Spanish painter, deaf and blind by the time of his death.
- Victorine Morriseau (1789 – 1832): first deafblind person to be educated in Paris.
- James Mitchell (1795 – 1869): congenitally deafblind son of Scottish minister.
- Sanzan Tani (1802 – 1867): Japanese teacher who became deaf in childhood and blind later in life, communicating with students by touch.
- Hieronymus Lorm (1821 – 1902): inventor and novelist.
- Laura Bridgman (1829 – 1889): first deafblind child to be successfully educated in the US.
- Mary Bradley (? – 1866): first deafblind child to be successfully educated in the UK.
- Joseph Hague: second deafblind child to be successfully educated in the UK.
- Yvonne Pitrois (1880 – 1937): French biographer.
- Helen Keller (1880 – 1968): author, activist, and lecturer, first deafblind person to receive a Bachelor of Arts degree and perhaps the person most popularly associated with the condition.
- Marie Heurtin (1885-1921) first deafblind born child to be successfully educated in Larnay (France).
- Alice Betteridge (1901 – 1966): first deafblind Australian to be educated. Teacher, traveller, writer.
- Jack Clemo (1916 – 1994): British poet who became deafblind as an adult.
- Richard Kenney (1924 – 1979): educator, lecturer, and poet; third deafblind person to graduate from an American university; president of the Hadley School for the Blind from 1975 to 1979.
- Robert Smithdas (1925 – ): first deafblind person in the US to receive a master's degree.
- Mae Brown (1935 – 1973): Canada’s first deafblind university graduate; developed services for the deafblind at the Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB). 
- Vasile Adamescu (1944 – ): Romanian teacher and sculptor.
- Theresa Poh Lin Chan (1945? – ): Singaporean teacher and writer.
- Anindya (Bapin) Bhattacharyya (1970? - ): technology expert living in the US.
||This section possibly contains original research. (December 2012)|
It is often assumed deafblind individuals accept both identities. As with most individuals who identify with more than one group on the basis of a single characteristic, a deafblind individual’s identity is similarly complex. Helen Keller, a prominent activist recognized for her important contributions to the blind population, serves as the perfect example of the complexities of a deafblind individual’s identity.
Keller first captured the public's attention when she graduated from Radcliffe in 1904, when she began advocating for both the blind and the deaf populations. After several years, she found advocating for both the deaf and the blind was too complex. Keller changed her focus to the needs of the blind. As a result of this transformation, her identity as a deaf woman began to vanish. To further emphasize her new identity, in Helen Keller’s Journal, 1936 - 1937, she wrote a controversial statement suggesting being deaf was more burdensome than being blind. Additionally, Keller’s close relationship and work with Alexander Graham Bell, which included sensitive topics such as eugenics and oralism, contribute to the skepticism many culturally Deaf individuals feel about her. By choosing the blind identity, she lost an important connection to the Deaf community. Though Keller felt the need to choose her identity, not all deafblind individuals feel the need to do so. Using Keller's situation as a case study, it is possible to observe issues raised by identity within a minority group.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Deafblindness.|
- Congenital rubella syndrome
- Tangible symbol systems
- Tommy (rock opera)
- Usher syndrome
- White cane (used by blind people to assist them in walking)
- Keller, Helen (1938). Helen Keller's Journal, 1936-1937. Garden City, NY: Doubleday, Doran & Co.
- Kudlick, Catherine; Nielsen (2005). "Kim". Journal of American History. 4 91 (Review of the Radical Lives of Helen Keller).
- "NCDB Selected Topics: Deaf-Blindness Overview". Nationaldb.org. Retrieved 2012-03-04.
- "Francisco Goya, Spanish painters, biography of francisco goya, francisco goya painting, picture of francisco goya, history of paintings, famous painters". Reviewpainting.com. Retrieved 2012-03-04.
- Brueggman, Brenda (2006). Women & Deafness: Double Visions. Washington, D.C: Gallaudet University Press. pp. 8–35.
- Wilhelm Jerusalem "Marie Heurtin. Education of a Girl born Deaf and Blind" English Manuscript from the Library of the Perkins School for the Blind, Boston 1906
- "Notes and News", Bulletin of Prosthetics Research, Fall 1979.
- "Bravo, Miss Brown! | University of Toronto Magazine". Magazine.utoronto.ca. Retrieved 2012-03-04.
- The National Consortium On Deaf-Blindness
- Deafblind UK supporting deafblind people in the UK
- The Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths and Adults
- Sense Scotland Scottish charity for Deafblindness
- The Helen Keller International Award, art competition at the Wayback Machine (archived October 18, 2010)
- Sense - UK charity for Deafblindness
- Sense International (India), an NGO working with deafblind people
- The Center for Deaf-Blind Persons
- Frequently Asked Questions About DeafBlindness - Detailed info about what it's like to be deafblind (communication, mobility, cultural identity, quality of life, etc.)
- World Federation of the Deafblind
- American Association of the Deaf-Blind
- Sense International (India) - working with Deafblind people in India
- Canadian Deafblind and Rubella Association
- New York Deaf-Blind Collaborative - working with Deaf-blind youth, families, and service providers in New York
- Kansas Deaf-Blind Fund - offsets costs associated with educating students who are deaf-blind
- Oklahoma Deaf-Blind Technical Assistance Project - working with children & youth with DB, their families, educational teams, and agencies
- APASCIDE The Spanish Association of Families of Deafblind People
- Able Australia - formerley the Deafblind Association of Victoria, Australia
- Helen Keller, Wilhelm Jerusalem and the froundation of the first deaf blind institute in Vienna in 1913 taken from "Wilhelm Jerusalem - Helen Keller:'Letters'" edited by Herbert Gantschacher. ISBN 978-3-9503173-0-5, ARBOS-Edition © & ® 2010-2012