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First ever summer school in Africa for and by deaf academics

Academic studies or an academic career are a big challenge if you are deaf. Particularly in Africa, where many countries don’t even have secondary schools for the deaf. A team of Leiden academics has organised the first summer school for and by deaf academics on the African continent, in Ghana. We spoke to the organisers – some of whom are deaf themselves – just before they left.

‘It really is a unique event,’ says senior university lecturer Victoria Nyst. She has conducted years of research at Leiden University into the many sign languages that are used on the African continent. She and some of her PhD candidates are the driving force behind the African School for Deaf Studies, a summer school that is being held in Accra, Ghana from 1 to 16 August. The participants come from 11 different African countries and are all deaf. Nyst: ‘This is the first time that such an international, academic event for the deaf is being held in Africa.’

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