UCL Deafness Cognition and Language Research Centre


Joana Morêdo Pereira

Show of Hands: The Cultural Impact of Performing Signed Songs

Joana Morêdo Pereira Profile Photo

PhD student in Deaf Studies, focusing on Deaf Culture and its artistic manifestations.

Research aims at understanding the impact Signed Song performances can have on audiences as powerful tools for social change, and focuses on both Portuguese Sign Language (LGP) and British Sign Language (BSL). My project aims at disseminating the beautiful artistic contents signed languages can produce, as a way of alerting society to the fact they are full languages, and hence shifting the perspective on the Deaf towards a less pathological and a more ethnic model.

My academic training includes a Licenciate's Degree (5-year undergraduate program) in Portuguese Sign Language Translation and Interpreting (The School for Higher Studies in Education of Setúbal, 2005); a Master of Sciences in Portuguese Sign Language and Deaf Education (The Portuguese Catholic University, 2008); and a Postgraduate Diploma in Languages, Literatures and Cultures - specializing in Cultural Studies (The New University of Lisbon, 2014).

I have been a professional sign language interpreter/translator for 15 years in diverse settings such as Education, Art, Science, Deaf Community, Conferences and meetings. I was a lecturer at the Portuguese Catholic University, where I coordinated the interpreting/tutoring team on an undergraduate programme designed for Deaf students. My published work includes articles on Sign Linguistics, Deaf Culture, Sign Language Interpreting, and as a book on Deaf Culture and interpersonal relationships.

My long-term goals are to become a pioneer Deaf Culture researcher in Portugal, and contribute for the production and dissemination of knowledge on this cultural minority. I wish to work towards the safeguarding of Deaf cultural patrimony, an essential step in the pursue of social equality, empowerment and Human Rights for the Deaf.

My research interests are Deaf Studies, Cultural Studies, Minority Studies, Signed Languages and Intercultural Studies.