Audio description in Canada
Title of edited book
The Routledge handbook of audio description
Year of publication
Audio description (AD) is the use of words to translate the visual to the verbal. It provides a verbal version of the visual: the visual is made verbal, and aural, and oral. Using words that are succinct, vivid, and imaginative, the visual image is conveyed to a segment of the population to whom it is not fully accessible. Estimates by the American Foundation for the Blind now put that number at over 26 million Americans alone who are blind or have difficulty seeing even with correction. This fact is not fully realized by the majority of the sighted population, who see but may not observe. AD was first the subject of published research in the United States by Gregory Frazier in the late 1970s and the first ongoing audio description service premiered in the U.S. in 1981. This chapter chronicles the development of AD from those American landmarks (and others) and up to the present – 2021.