top of page

CODA Festival Conference 

Screenshot 2024-04-05 at 12.46.47.png

CODA Festival conference:
Friday 4th - Saturday 5th October 2024  
University College Cork, Ireland 

ISL Information 

BSL Information 


Research shows that 90% of children born to deaf parents can hear. They are often identified by the abbreviated term “CODA” or Children of Deaf Adults. Hearing CODAs grow up in deaf culture from which they learn sign language from their parents. They are sometimes perceived as a “hidden minority” amongst the majority population because they remain invisible to the professionals in the fields of social work, family welfare, schooling, employment education, psychology, counselling and psychotherapy. This lack of attention to CODAs occurs because of attention is often fixated on the needs of deaf parents and siblings. Furthermore, CODAs are seen to belong to the “normal” social identity group despite the fact that they experience a range of negative social attitudes and stigmatization. The international CODA literature – articles, books, and autobiographies – has well-documented CODA’s roles as “cultural brokers” by which they mediate relationships and information between their deaf parents and hearing people who do not have sign language skills. The question is: what would the CODA life experiences of culture, identity and language look like when presented on a public stage through performance and narrative storytelling?

The CODA Festival conference aims to answer this question by providing a platform for showcasing CODA’s lived experience of culture, identity and sign language through a series of artwork exhibitions, workshops, presentations and discussions. 


The theme for the conference is: CODA culture, language and identity

Conference Organisers: Dr Noel O’Connell (Postdoctoral Researcher ), Catherine White, Hannah O'Connor & Matthew Shrine (CODA UK & Ireland). 




Presenter/Panel Member ------------------------------------------ Free

Professional (Includes CPD certificate) ---------------------------- €40

General Participant ------------------------------------------------ €30

Student and/or unemployed --------------------------------------- €20


Financial assistance

We want to enable participation in the conference workshops for those participants who do not have the financial means to pay the conference participation fee. If you are currently unable to afford a space but are still interested in participating in the conference, there will be a possibility to apply for financial assistance or sponsorship from CODA UK and Ireland. For more information please contact 

Abstract Submission 

CODAs are invited to submit abstracts on performance, books, signed stories, poetry, art, workshops and presentations which address the following questions:

  • What binds CODAs together as a community?


  • How do CODAs see themselves in relation to others and how do others perceive them?


  • How do CODAs respond to society’s attitude and behaviour toward them and their parents? 


  • How do CODAs manage to find their own paths in life in surroundings that are not always inclusive? 

The conference programme is based on delegates’ submission of their presentation abstracts chosen from the conference’s main themes. Each presentation will be for a maximum of 15 minutes duration. There will be 4 presentation slots for each conference theme.  


CULTURE: “How do CODAs respond to society’s attitude and behaviour toward them and their Deaf parents?” The discussion in this section is concerned with how CODAs experience being exposed to stigmatisation and the negative attitudes of society towards their Deaf parents. Presenters and panel members will discuss the impact that exposure to stigmatisation and negative attitudes has on CODAs health and wellbeing. How do CODAs experience discrimination and deaf-related stigmatisation? If CODAs do not experience discrimination themselves, how are they affected by the discrimination against their Deaf parents?

IDENTITY: “How do CODAs see themselves in relation to others and how do others perceive them?”

The discussion will focus on how CODAs construct identity based on how they perceive themselves and on how others perceive them and on their social interaction and relationships with family members and general society (e.g. school, communities).  Exploring individual perceptions of identity would contribute to a greater understanding of CODAs life experiences. Presenters and panel members are asked to reference a number of CODA autobiographies and life stories as part of their discussion on identity issues. How do CODAs construct identity based on social relationships with Deaf and hearing people?

LANGUAGE: “How do CODAs use language as a form of agency and empowerment?” 

The discussion in this section will be on the importance of language or languages in the CODA lifeworld in terms of developing agency resilience and empowerment in the face of stigma and discrimination. CODAs may experience discrimination and stigmatization as a result of having deaf parents. Presenters and panel members are asked to reference CODA films in their discussion on the role of language in the CODA lifeworld. How do CODAs use language as a form of agency and empowerment in the context of lifestyle, health, employment and education?

bottom of page