Posts Tagged ‘Accessibility’

If you’re interested in Paganism and in Sign Language Interpreting, here’s a workshop that might interest you:

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This is a workshop being taught by yours truly, and sponsored by (DM)², an interpreting company located in the Seattle area. Operated by two sign language interpreters (both of whose initials are DM, hence the name of the company), (DM)² strives to provide quality workshops and mentoring for sign language interpreters.

Participants will delve into the world of witchcraft – or to be more precise, examine some of the parallelisms that exist between Paganism and Deafhood, and how those similarities can be used to enhance an understanding of both communities, as well as improve one’s interpreting skills. We will be discussing magick and spirituality, change and transformation, power and will. In addition we will be examining Pagan ethics and how they can be applied to the field of interpreting, and also learning how to sign common Pagan words, phrases, chants, and rites.

Since this workshop is geared towards sign language interpreters, one must be fluent in American Sign Language (ASL) in order to attend. Interpretation is not provided for the signing impaired – if you can’t understand ASL, you won’t get much out of this workshop.

However, this workshop can be modified as necessary in order to meet the needs of the audience. If you’re a Deaf person interested in learning more about Paganism, the workshop can focus on such. If you’re a Pagan interested in learning more about Deaf Culture, likewise – I can modify the workshop for such an audience with such a goal. The basic premise and content of this workshop will remain similar; but the perspective will shift – one can look at Paganism from a Deaf perspective or Deafhood from a Pagan perspective.

With this having been said, there are a few things I would like to mention:

The provision of interpreting services depends on the Pagan Community being supportive of such. My experience is that generally…the Pagan Community is not supportive of this and through their actions (or lack of such) have demonstrated themselves to be non-accessible and thus non-inclusive to the Deaf Community. This needs to change. The Pagan Community needs to demonstrate a willingness to be accessible, and to reach out to the Deaf Community and welcome them to Pagan events.

Yes, I am aware of the shoestring budgets of most Pagan organizations, and the fact that they operate predominately on volunteerism. This is not a bad thing, but I do feel that the Pagan Community needs to start becoming more fiscally responsible, and looking at ways to raise the necessary funds which may be required to cover certain expenses involved in putting on different events – including the cost of sign language interpreters.

Most Pagan organizations, communities, and individuals know very little about Deaf Culture, Sign Language, Interpreting, and/or the Deaf Community. This lack of knowledge has a direct impact on how effectively the two communities communicate with one another and work together. It is my hope to be able to change that.

Likewise, most Deaf individuals know little about Paganism, and/or what they do know is often inaccurate. There are many misconceptions about Paganism, such as thinking that Pagans are evil, don’t believe in God, and worship the devil. This same lack of knowledge also creates separation between the two communities. It’s important that both communities develop an understanding of each other in order to work together.

Thus I am offering this workshop to all interested groups: Deaf, Interpreters, Pagans, and other Interested Folks. Please feel free to get in touch with me if you’d like to discuss a workshop or presentation.

Let’s bring a little magick to YOUR area!







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