Paper presented at York University, Toronto, on January 14th, 2022, and during the Carleton University Music and Culture Graduate Student Society 2022 Symposium, Ottawa, on March 26th, 2022. Both presentations were live and were not recorded. The following abstract gives an idea of the content.
How does someone deaf hear music? Is there another approach to sound when the ears are not working? In this paper, based on the assumption that deafness is incompatible with sound, thus with music, I explore the interconnections between hearing impairments and music-making, from the nineteenth century to today. Through the journey of musicians with hearing issues, I assert that the multiple tools and techniques developed for and by these musicians have transformed society’s assumptions about disability and music. Through the study of the history of devices related to hearing loss, I examine the progression of the technologies available, and the choices of using these technologies made by deaf musicians.