The Best Deaf History Book Recommendations

Learn more about Deaf history than you ever wanted to know!

If you are learning ASL and planning to be a part of the Deaf community, you have to know about Deaf history. You can read our history of sign language page, but that doesn’t hold a candle to everything you can learn from these books. We highly recommend all of the books in this list. They will give you a greater insight into the history that the Deaf had to endure than you have ever known.

Forbidden Signs: American Culture and the Campaign against Sign Language (Paperback)


This book focuses on the history of the oppression of American Sign Language and was a required book for my Deaf History class. We highly recommend this book because it is not only easy to read, it goes into detail about how sign language was forbidden in schools and the fact that many attempts have been made by hearing society to prevent deaf people from using sign language. Highly, highly recommended!
New From: $11.26 USD In Stock
Used from: $5.63 USD In Stock

Deaf History Unveiled: Interpretations from the New Scholarship (Paperback)


Another required Deaf History book, we recommend this one as well. It is a little difficult to read at times, but it offers great information. The book compiles 16 essays that range in topics from new themes in Deaf history and Deaf culture experiences compared to the experiences of African American culture to societal paternalism toward the Deaf and the determination of Deaf people to establish employment, education, and social structures. This book is a deep read, but well worth it!
New From: $27.34 USD In Stock
Used from: $8.11 USD In Stock

A Place of Their Own: Creating the Deaf Community in America (Paperback)


This was a required history of Deaf Culture book for my Deaf History as well as my Issues and Trends in the Deaf Community class, and I love it. Some books just talk about Deaf culture and how it is today. This book actually goes in depth and back into Deaf history to explain the trends and the changes that have taken place in the Deaf community. We highly recommend this book for anyone learning ASL and becoming involved in the Deaf community.
New From: $17.50 USD In Stock
Used from: $3.81 USD In Stock

Deaf President Now!: The 1988 Revolution at Gallaudet University (Paperback)


Understanding the Deaf President Now movement is critical to understanding Deaf Culture. To read more about DPN and gain a more in-depth understanding about what happened that year, we highly recommend this book.
New From: $26.58 USD In Stock
Used from: $16.05 USD In Stock

Baltimore’s Deaf Heritage (Images of America) (Paperback)


A great book for comparative cultural studies on the Deaf cultures in different areas, Baltimore’s Deaf Heritage illustrates the evolution of Baltimore’s Deaf community and its prominent leaders.
New From: $13.11 USD In Stock
Used from: $13.49 USD In Stock

Detroit’s Deaf Heritage (Images of America) (Paperback)


A great book for comparative cultural studies on the Deaf cultures in different areas, Detroit’s Deaf Heritage illustrates the evolution of the deaf community in Detroit and its prominent leaders.
New From: $11.68 USD In Stock
Used from: $11.76 USD In Stock


We can’t emphasize enough how important these books are. I learned so much from reading them, and I can only pray that you will learn about this amazing history as well.

If you have a favorite Deaf history book that is not mentioned on this page, please share in the comments below!

Please leave only comments that add to the article or discussion. Any help or support comments should be directed to Start ASL Help & Support. Thank you!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *