International Stuttering Awareness Day theme

Stuttering_Pride4

This is the official logo and theme for the 2016 International Stuttering Awareness Day.

Stuttering Pride.
Respect. Dignity. Recognition.

We would like to provide some explanation.

We should take pride in who we are irrespective of our stuttering. Pride can be the antidote to the shame and guilt that many of us experience. Our struggle with stuttering often comes from viewing stuttering in a negative light, which is understandable given the challenge we often have in speaking. The struggle, however, also comes as a result of a society that, in general, does not understand, and often does not accept stuttering. When we speak about Stuttering Pride we allow ourselves to open up to the thought that we are OK, even if we stutter, but even more than that: we can take pride in who we are and for the entire person that we are. We can take immense pride in ourselves when we speak in spite of our struggle to do so. We can take pride in “showing up”, when hiding away might be easier.

In the community of people who stutter, there has been much discussion about the concept, borrowed from the LGBT community, of Coming Out, about proudly and unapologetically allowing ourselves to stutter. Such “Coming Out” might indeed be liberating for us, as we allow our true selves to be seen and as we allow ourselves to pursue our dreams and ambitions without letting our stuttering hold us back. The more we Come Out, the more stuttering becomes a common part of society, the more awareness and acceptance it brings and the more People Who Stuttering understand they are not alone.

The concept of Stuttering Pride is intellectually and emotionally challenging for many of us. This is why we thought that it is a theme that can generate very interesting papers and stimulating discussion.

Part of the theme includes the words respect, dignity and recognition.  These words are important as they reflect the key message of stuttering pride, that we deserve respect, we deserve dignity and we deserve to be recognized as people.  We are a lot more than people who stutter and we are proud.

We welcome and encourage you to express your thoughts on this topic in a paper, video or other submission for publication in the International Stuttering Awareness Day online conference 2016, between October 1 and October 22.

We will release a call for submissions soon.

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