Victoria University

"Deaf is best": Exploring the sexuality experiences and knowledge of Deaf women in New Zealand

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dc.contributor.advisor Kirkman, Allison Prior, April Sunshine 2015-11-24T00:27:08Z 2015-11-24T00:27:08Z 2014 2015
dc.description.abstract This study has two primary purposes. Initially, it explores the accounts of sexuality-related experiences and knowledge of a group of Deaf women in New Zealand. The limited international literature available has primarily focused on Deaf sexuality in terms of deficits and vulnerabilities and no work has been carried out on the topic in New Zealand, so relatively little is known about an influential aspect of Deaf women’s lives. The second purpose for this study is to generate recommendations for improving the sexuality information and services available to the women. This study accomplished the two aims by using an action research framework in which Deaf Aotearoa New Zealand, the national organisation for the Deaf, was a collaborative research partner. The seven women who participated in the study were split into two focus groups, one for NZ European/ Pākeha women and one for Asian and Pacific women. The focus groups were conducted in August 2012 at a Deaf club. Also present during the focus groups were a professional New Zealand Sign Language interpreter, a Deaf woman who served as co-facilitator, and myself. In the focus groups, the women discussed their experiences and understanding of concepts with regard to intimate relationships, sexual experiences, and sexuality more generally. Their accounts revealed the potential impact their family’s cultural background, the ability of those around them to communicate through New Zealand Sign Language, and their personal English literacy levels had on their sexuality knowledge and development. Those who had greater access to information and support reported more positive experiences. As a result, recommendations are made for improving information accessibility across the lifespan, with a special emphasis on programming and services provided by Deaf Aotearoa. The recommendations conclude with a description of a programme developed alongside Deaf Aotearoa that addresses some of these areas and which will be implemented with regional groups of Deaf women. As a result, the contributions made by the Deaf women who participated in this project are already demonstrating an impact in programme development. en_NZ
dc.language.iso en_NZ
dc.publisher Victoria University of Wellington en_NZ
dc.subject Deaf en_NZ
dc.subject Women en_NZ
dc.subject Sexuality en_NZ
dc.title "Deaf is best": Exploring the sexuality experiences and knowledge of Deaf women in New Zealand en_NZ
dc.type Text en_NZ
vuwschema.contributor.unit School of Social and Cultural Studies en_NZ
vuwschema.type.vuw Awarded Research Masters Thesis en_NZ Social Policy en_NZ Victoria University of Wellington en_NZ Master's en_NZ Master of Arts en_NZ
vuwschema.subject.anzsrcfor 130308 Gender, Sexuality and Education en_NZ
vuwschema.subject.anzsrcfor 130312 Special Education and Disability en_NZ
vuwschema.subject.anzsrcfor 160512 Social Policy en_NZ
vuwschema.subject.anzsrcfor 169901 Gender Specific Studies en_NZ
vuwschema.subject.anzsrcfor 200205 Culture, Gender, Sexuality en_NZ
vuwschema.subject.anzsrcfor 209999 Language, Communication and Culture not elsewhere classified en_NZ
vuwschema.subject.anzsrcseo 970116 Expanding Knowledge through Studies of Human Society en_NZ

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