Essay Sample on Deaf Entertainers: Triumph Over Challenge in Inspirational Doc

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  3
Wordcount:  683 Words
Date:  2023-01-10


"See What I'm Saying: The Deaf Entertainers Documentary" produced in 2010 and directed by Hilari Scarl, is an inspirational documentary that narrates the life of a comic, a dancer, a singer, drummer and actor who are all deaf entertainers. The deaf entertainers portraying talents in various disciplines face a lot of challenges in their career journey which they overcome in order to reach their professional success and personal triumphs. TJ Forsberg is a musician, CJ Jones a comedian, Bob Hiltermann is a drummer while Robert DeMayo is an actor. They all portray what it feels like to be deaf in the world where everybody perceives disability as an inability and the personal struggles they encounter due to their condition.

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The deaf community has been misrepresented in the society as the people try to communicate it from a hearing vantage point. The film portrays the history of the deaf, whereby they were discriminated and even persecuted because they could not hear. Nevertheless, the deaf do not view their inability to hear as a disability, they hold that they just communicate in a different way. The bond between the deaf keeps them moving, creating a community that shares common values, beliefs, and experiences. Although they have always been ignored by the hearing community, the manner in which the talented deaf entertainers struggle with their identities to eventually get recognized by various producers in the respective industries who make their dreams come true stands out in the movie. I have always known that the deaf community can also be successful and as it can be seen from the movie, the deaf entertainers did let their deafness deter them from reaching their success. The four deaf entertainers prove to the world that being deaf does make them less of human beings. They are capable of doing everything like any other person apart from hearing and they also have talents that they fail to fully explore because the harsh world cannot allow them.

While watching the movie, it reminded me of how the people look down upon the deaf treating them as if they do not exist. There is a time I visited a restaurant in which there were two men who were deaf. Although I found them in the restaurant nobody seemed to bother about them and the waiter came to collect my order not caring to look at them. When I asked her why she was not attending to them, she claimed that she did not know what they wanted and she went on concentrating on other customers. As I watched the film and saw the suffering that the talented deaf artists went through it reminded of the two deaf men in the restaurant reflecting on how difficult it is to navigate life in the world with a hearing impairment. For instance, C.J waits to be picked up at the airport his announcement is made over the PA system of which if he had no interpreter he would not know somebody was looking for him. In addition, Forbergs is denied various parts she had auditions for just because she is not "deaf enough", DeMayo cannot get a job as a waiter because of his condition and he is evicted because he cannot afford rent while gigs find it hard to attend Hiltermann's teaching lessons because he cannot hear (Scarl, 0:30).


The film "See What I am Saying" is a touching documentary that strengthens the deaf culture by bringing sign language into the film to be accessed by both the deaf and the hearing audiences. At first, I thought the movie would be boring and I would need an interpreter to help me follow it up (Scarl, 0:5). However, I was able to follow it through to the end. The movie was sad, marvelous, funny and inspirational, which made me cry and laugh at the same time. The hearing community needs to understand what the deaf go through and I believe everything stated in the movie was relevant; nothing should have been left unsaid.

Work Cited

"See What I'm Saying: The Deaf Entertainers Documentary." Scarl, Hillary. Worldplay, 2010.

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Essay Sample on Deaf Entertainers: Triumph Over Challenge in Inspirational Doc. (2023, Jan 10). Retrieved from

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