Bell Vs. Gallaudet

763 Words4 Pages
Alexander Graham Bell and Edward Minor Gallaudet are leaders that hold great purpose in the history of communication. Both of these men have very similar upbringings. A.G. Bell’s father and grandfather were elocutionist. His father developed Visible Speech which was to make oral sounds through written symbols as a design to improve speech. E. M. Gallaudet’s father, Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet, established the first school for deaf students in the United States. Both Gallaudet and Bell’s mothers were deaf and incapable of speech reading. Both of their fathers lead to play an impact on their career choices. Even with their careers, they both had mentors that were similar. EGM’s mentor, Amos Kendall, and AGB’s mentor, Gardiner Green Hubbard, held…show more content…
Bell believed that the oral method should hold precedence. His mother, Eliza, was deaf but became hearing impaired during childhood, after attaining speech and language. She was very intelligent and was able to use oral communication but also had a hearing trumpet to aid her. Also, coming from a family of elocutionists, Eliza spoke well and AGB had a strong speech-orientation. AGB only encountered post-lingual deafness from childhood until his early twenties, which may give rise to his philosophy. When Bell married, it was to Mabel Hubbard (the daughter of Gardiner Green Hubbard). Mabel was highly intelligent and was said to have had great success with the oral method; that is until her success was found to be phony when it was discovered that she became hearing impaired around the age of 5 and never lost her ability to…show more content…
He believed that all deaf children should be taught language auditorally and without sign language. His philosophy was fixated on society before the individual. The desired result of the oral philosophy was to integrate the individual into society. Bell was also a social Darwinist and took interest in eugenics. He was engrossed in evolving a superior race through selective breeding. His theme of oralism was society versus the individual. His focus was not to prepare the individual to learn and achieve up to his or her potential, but rather to allow the individual to become a participating member of a larger society (p91). Bell found that society’s needs and expectation were important and to meet those needs and expectations, one would need oral education (91). He believed sign language would separate deaf individuals from hearing individuals and wanted to get rid of sign language. Edward Minor Gallaudet had a much different platform. His mother, Sophia, was born deaf and was not educated. She did not attend school until she was 19 and only attended for four years. Sophia used sign language as her way of communication. Due to Gallaudet’s exposure to a deaf individual so early in life, he was given an example of hose a deaf person using manual methods felt happy and fulfilled as an individual (78). EGM’s entire family signed and his father was the founder of the American Asylum for Deaf-mutes. After EGM attended college,

    More about Bell Vs. Gallaudet

      Open Document