The Deaf and Mute as Subalterns in Korean Contexts: Analysis of Korean Film of Silenced (Do-Ga-Ni)


This research is an investigation of a Korean film (Do-Ga-Ni or Silenced in 2011), which reflects the contemporary situation in South Korea where the sexual crimes against disabled children in educational institutions have occurred. In this research, the deaf students are positioned as subalterns who are recognized as the underrepresented that do not have the ability to speak for themselves. Through the methodology of illuminating individual cases of deaf students featured in this movie, this investigation approaches this interpretation: the testimony of the deaf children through their sign language in the courtroom, although this act of speaking for themselves suggests a possibility to change their identity from subalterns to non-subalterns, turns out to be ineffective due to the social elites’ rejection to admit their statement. This does result in a death of a subaltern, which makes the consciousness of the dead student disappear permanently from the understandings of the Korean public.

Keywords: Deaf, Death, Representation., Sign Language, Silenced (Do-Ga-Ni), Subaltern

Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 17-25 (Download PDF)

Creative Commons Licence
This work by European American Journals is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License