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Deafness is the condition of not being able to hear. In the United States, deaf people are entitled to certain government programs to help them due to the limitations imposed upon them by their disability. The legal definition of deafness in America is not absolute loss of hearing, but an inability to hear up to an acceptable level even with corrective devices.

Deafness can be a condition from birth or be caused be a later accident or illness. Loud noises can cause deafness or hearing loss.

In the United States and English Canada, American Sign Language (or ASL, Ameslan) is the most used sign language. There is a common misconception that ASL is simply signed English; it is in fact a natural language (as opposed to a conlag), and is not related. For example, ASL is not mutually intelligible with British Sign Language, which is the dominant sign language of England. ASL is closely related to French sign language and the now-extinct Martha's Vineyard Sign Language.

In the Bible, Jesus cured the deaf and restored their hearing.

In Israel, Deaf citizens are drafted into the Israeli Defense Forces when they graduate high school;[1] some even become officers.[2]'

See also


  1. IDF enables diabetes victims, deaf to be drafted. Jerusalem Post (31 January 2006). Retrieved on 3 August 2014.
  2. Administrator. Deaf combat intelligence soldier awarded IDF officer's stripes (en-gb).