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Milan Conference 1880
Transcript of Milan Conference 1880
Milan Conference 1880
Golden Age of Deaf Education in America
1864 Columbia Institution for the Deaf - Gallaudet University
1867 Clarke School for the Deaf: 1st major oral school
1817 American School for the Deaf
Residential schools for the Deaf are created and Deaf identity and culture begin to emerge.
*The Second International Congress of Teachers of Deaf-Mutes
*Regid Istitutio Tecnico Di Santa Marta, Milan, Italty (Congress)
*Demonstrations were held at the Royal Institution for the Deaf and Dumb Poor of the Province and at the Royal School for the Poor, both in Milan.
*These demonstrations were presented on three separate days before deliberation, to show the "oral success" of deaf school children. The demonstrations were conducted for Congress, by only the Italian teachers from their schools. It was evident, even by Oralist supporters, that their "success" was due to heavy rehearsal prior to the demonstration, not true oral methods.
*Number of Representatives per Country
87 Italians, 53 French, 8 British, 5 Americans, 3 Swedish, 1 Belgian, 1 German. The rest is unknown. There was an average attendance of 164 Delegates each day.
*There were only two Deaf Delegates;
James Dennison (Principal of the Columbian Institute, Washington D.C.) and Claudius Forestier (Director of Lyon School for the Deaf, France)
Goals of the Milan Conference:
1. Vote for and implement the Pure Oral Method within deaf education and to restrict use of any sign language
2. Remove deaf teachers from deaf education and to maintain complete control of deaf education
26 Pre-Resolution Questions:
*Divided into four major sections (buildings/school materials, teaching, methods, and special objections) which were submitted to Congress for discussion. The main focus throughout the week was about Section 3: Methods.
The Eight Resolutions
Hundreds of Oral schools opened while deaf schools conformed to Oralism or shut down.
Deaf teachers were replaced by hearing teachers that did not sign.
Class sizes were reduced to 10 students per class to create easier access to lipreading.
Education costs increased dramatically due to the need for training of teachers and students, and mandatory equipment.
Some schools punished those that used sign, and rewarded those that used speech.
Even deaf children with limited vision were forced to use their available sight to lipread and denied the access to tactile methods.
Hearing parents were told to use only speech and lipreading with their children.
Due to the conclusions drawn at the Milan Conference, audism became a social norm and a major factor that affected all deaf people through suppression of their natural language, from birth to adulthood.