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Hearing loss, deafness, hard of hearing, anacusis, or hearing impairment (a term considered derogatory by many in the deaf community), is a partial or total inability to hear.

American Sign Language is naturally big and expressive. But some officers mistake it as wild or aggressive. ~ Nyle DiMarco
Father Mulcahy: Dear Lord I know there must be a reason for this. But what is it? I answered the call to do your work. I've devoted my life to it, and now how am I supposed to do it? Lord, what good am I now? What good is a deaf priest? I've prayed to you to help me and every day I get worse. Are you deaf too? ~ Alan Alda, Burt Metcalfe, John Rappaport, Dan Wilcox & Thad Mumford, Elias Davis & David Pollock, Karen Hall, Goodbye, Farewell, and Amen", M*A*S*H


  • Pozzo:  [suddenly furious]  Have you not done tormenting me with your accursed time!  It's abominable!  When!  When!  One day, is that not enough for you, one day he went dumb, one day I went blind, one day we'll go deaf, one day we were born, one day we shall die, the same day, the same second, is that not enough for you?  [calmer]  They give birth astride of a grave, the light gleams an instant, then it's night once more.
  • I figured I could get a job at a filling station somewhere, putting gas and oil in people's cars.  I didn't care what kind of job it was, though.  Just so people didn't know me and I didn't know anybody.  I thought what I'd do was, I'd pretend I was one of those deaf-mutes.  That way I wouldn't have to have any goddamn stupid useless conversations with anybody.  If anybody wanted to tell me something, they'd have to write it on a piece of paper and shove it over to me.  They'd get bored as hell doing that after a while, and then I'd be through with having conversations for the rest of my life.  Everybody'd think I was just a poor deaf-mute bastard and they'd leave me alone.
  • God:  Moses, this is the Lord, thy God, commanding you to obey my law.  Do you hear me?
    Moses:  Yes, I hear you, I hear you...a deaf man could hear you!
    God:  What?!
    Moses:  Nothing, forget about it, Oh Lord!  Why have you chosen me?  What would you have me do for you?
  • The problems of deafness are deeper and more complex, if not more important, than those of blindness.  Deafness is a much worse misfortune.  For it means the loss of the most vital stimulus — the sound of the voice that brings language, sets thoughts astir and keeps us in the intellectual company of man.
    • Helen Keller, letter to Dr. James Kerr Love (1910), published in Helen Keller in Scotland: a personal record written by herself (1933), edited by James Kerr Love.  Paraphrasing of this statement may have been the origin of a similar one which has become attributed to her:
Blindness cuts us off from things, but deafness cuts us off from people.
  • He cannot hear the skylark sing,
    The music of the wild bee’s wing;
    The murmur of the plaining bough ;
    A gentle whisper fairy low;
    The noise of falling waters near—
    All these have left his mournful ear.
  • After he took him aside, away from the crowd, Jesus put his fingers into the man's ears. Then he spit and touched the man's tongue. He looked up to heaven and with a deep sigh said to him, "Ephphatha!" (which means "Be opened!"). At this, the man's ears were opened, his tongue was loosened and he began to speak plainly. Jesus commanded them not to tell anyone. But the more he did so, the more they kept talking about it. People were overwhelmed with amazement. "He has done everything well," they said. "He even makes the deaf hear and the mute speak."
  • Cha vel fer erbee cha bouyr, as eshyn nagh jean clashtyn.
    • Manx proverb
    • Translation: None is so deaf as the one who will not hear.
    • Moore (1971). The Folk-lore of the Isle of Man. S. R. Publishers. p. 259. 
  • They never would hear,
    But turn the deaf ear,
    As a matter they had no concern in.

See also