Harlan Lane

Eminent ASL/Deaf Culture scholar

Harlan Lane’s specialty is neurolinguistics—the psychology of language—with a particular focus on Deaf people and American Sign Language. A distinguished nonfiction author he has written and co-written numerous books (e.g., When the Mind Hears: A History of the Deaf, The Mask of Benevolence, and A Deaf Artist in Early America: The Worlds of John Brewster Jr.) and scholarly articles. Several of these are must-reads for any serious student of ASL, Deaf Studies, or the history of the Deaf community. Dr. Lane is currently Distinguished University Professor at Northeastern University in Boston, where he founded NU’s American Sign Language Program. No stranger to controversy, he recognizes the Deaf community’s right to exist, and affirms sign language as the birthright of all deaf children.


Photo courtesy of Harlan Lane

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