Rome – a Temporary Deaf City! Deaflympics 2001
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The texts in this publication, Rome – a Temporary Deaf City, is based on fieldwork done in Rome, the summer of 2001, where the quadrennial Deaf World Games were held (now called Deaflympics). This fieldwork is the first one within the anthropological project «Global Connections in Deaf Worlds». The research team from Stein Rokkan’s Centre for Social Science Research in Bergen consists of Jan-Kåre Breivik (hearing anthropologist), Hilde Haualand (deaf anthropologist) and Per Solvang (hearing sociologist). By the time we went to Rome none of us were experienced in doing cofieldwork during such intensive events. The ethnographic paths were actually made while walking through the streets of Rome. Following a short introduction, the first text, by Breivik, is about some anthropological challenges related to fieldwork in nonconventional settings. The second one, by Haualand, is a description of how Rome gradually changed into a deaf village within two hectic summer weeks – and then, all in a sudden, disappeared. The third text, by Solvang, is a comment upon Haualand’s text. He is in particular focusing upon particular episodes, during the Deaflympics, which points towards nuances in deviance discourse (in which deaf life is also a part of). The fourth text, by Breivik, focuses on the close connections between deaf sports and transnational deaf life. It is in particular the team-sports, such as soccer, which are put in front. The final text, by Haualand, is a summary and a kind of location of Rome/Deaflympics within the broader project. Here, we invite our readers to participate in the project. This can be done by commenting upon and posing question towards the project, the researchers and our texts, and by proposing changes or revisions. You are also invited to supplement and broaden our work by providing us with your observations and considerations. This project is strongly user-oriented, and we are therefore inviting deaf persons to participate. We are in particular looking for deaf persons with experiences from the transnational deaf scene, but we are not excluding anyone because of this. This publication is also available in Norwegian and on the Internet. You can download the texts (in both languages) from the project-website: www.deaf.linator.com. Here, you will also find more information on the project and different ways to reach members of the research team.