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Patricia Raswant

Patricia Raswant earned a BA in history from Gallaudet University. In 1995, she completed the consortium course, the Arab Studies, at George Mason University. The Arab studies course was the very first time she came across a respectful book, The Imperial Harem:  Women and Sovereignty in the Ottoman Empire  by Leslie Pierce published by Oxford University Press, 1993, which mentioned Deaf people at Topkapi Palace. From that moment, she has never stopped researching Deaf people at Topkapi Palace.

Prior to studying history, Patricia studied the linguistics of American Sign Language (ASL), and she used to teach American Sign Language (ASL) as a foreign language requirement to prepare the hearing students for the interpretation program at Northern Virginia Community College in Annandale. Patricia left her museum job to teach English language to students who were Deaf at Gallaudet University English Language Institute, a traditional school for the Deaf.  Patricia also earned another MA, in Education, Curriculum, and Instruction with a specialization in English as a second language (ESL) from University of Phoenix. Then she taught ESL to International Deaf students at Inlingua of Washington, DC, a progressive school until her stroke, she had retired, but not her love for researching.


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The Quest to Understand Haliphat’s Speaking Handshapes

The Quest to Understand Haliphat’s Speaking Handshapes

Over three decades ago, walking up a wide and elegant marbled staircase passageway in a museum, a funerary relief bust of Haliphat in a secluded alcove first caught my eye. From that moment I was...
Sign Language Only in the Topkapi Palace of Suleiman!

Sign Language Only in the Topkapi Palace of Suleiman!

Almost everyone at the Istanbul Topkapi Palace was a slave, but this is not the only curious attribute the palace had when ruled by Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent. Everyone was forced to learn and...