Alone in the Mainstream Essay

1461 WordsApr 13, 20156 Pages
In the book, Alone in the Mainstream: A Deaf Woman Remembers Public School, the author and narrator, Gina Oliva, takes us through the story of her life and the Solitary Mainstream Project. We also experience an in depth look on what growing up was like for children who were either deaf or hard of hearing and had to attend public schools with able hearing peers. Through this wonderful novel about deaf culture, Oliva not only tells us about her own experiences and beliefs about the “solitary mainstream experience” (or the “alone in the mainstream experience”), but also takes the first hand accounts of actual people who lived through the same struggles and challenges that she too went through. Not only does she mention her results about what she found in her interviews, but she consistently uses direct quotes from the interviewees throughout her story. She also lines the book with interesting topics such as disclosure, how teachers treated them, and social life as a kid, as well as an adult. For most of Gina and her interviewee’s school careers, they were one of, if not the only deaf or hard of hearing students in their school. Although Gina was not born hard of hearing, it was not until kindergarten that she realized that she was “different,” from the rest of the children in her class. The class was playing a game where they close their eyes and when they hear the piano start to play the get up and walk in a circle. They closed their eyes but when the piano started playing she did not get up. When she opened her eyes, she immediately felt an overwhelming sense of embarrassment. They concluded that her hearing loss was over time because her language development was normal and her lip reading skill were at an expert level. At the age of 5 she received her first hearing aid and was kept in the mainstream system. Mainstream Education is keeping a student with special

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