Accessibility / Report Error

Language and mental deficiency: speech therapy possibilities and restrictions

Based on the historical-cultural theory assumptions we herein aim to reflect on mentally deficient subjects#039; language. The data were collected from video recording transcriptions along one year of weekly speech therapy sessions, with the participation of two speech therapy interns and four youngsters with mental deficiency, aged between 19 and 29. We focused on the interactions of one of the youngsters with his peers and therapists. The results revealed that at some moments the therapists#039; and the peers#039; interpretation led to the understanding of the communicative intention. However, there were moments when such understanding didn#039;t occur and the dialogue was interrupted. The importance of the other for building up meaning and guiding therapeutic actions which can promote the creation of language alternatives is here discussed. Therefore, it is considered that a more attentive look to understand the communicative purposes of subjects with mental deficiency can enhance their development.

Historical-Cultural Approach; mental deficiency; speech therapy intervention

Universidade Estadual de Maringá Avenida Colombo, 5790, CEP: 87020-900, Maringá, PR - Brasil., Tel.: 55 (44) 3011-4502; 55 (44) 3224-9202 - Maringá - PR - Brazil