The experience of stuttering among Ultra-Orthodox and Secular/Traditional Jews

Debora Freud, Ruth Ezrati-Vinacour, Nitza Katz-Bernstein, Leah Fostick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Purpose This groundbreaking research compares the experience of stuttering among adult male People Who Stutter (PWS) from the ultra-Orthodox (UO) Jewish community in Israel to those from Secular/Traditional (ST) backgrounds. Methods Participants were 32 UO and 31 ST PWS, aged 18–67 years. Self-report questionnaires utilized: Perceived Stuttering Severity (PSS); Overall Assessment of the Speaker's Experience of Stuttering (OASES-A); Students’ Life Satisfaction Scale (SLSS); Situation Avoidance Behavior Checklist (SABC). Demographic, religious, and stuttering information was collected. Groups were compared on scales, and correlations between scales and the PSS. Results Subjective stuttering severity ratings were significantly higher among the UO. A significant group effect was found for the OASES-A quality of life subscale, but not other subscales. Significant positive correlations were found between: 1) PSS and OASES-A Total Impact; 2) PSS and 3 OASES subscales; and 3) PSS and SABC (indicating increased avoidance with increased stuttering severity rating). A significant negative correlation was found between the PSS and SLSS, indicating lower life satisfaction with higher rates of stuttering severity among the ST. Interestingly, when tested by group, significant correlations between the PSS and all other study measures were observed only among the ST. Conclusion UO participants showed higher subjective stuttering severity ratings, yet less impact on quality of life, and no correlation between subjective stuttering and other measures of stuttering experience. These novel findings may result from the combined protective effect of religiosity and socio-cultural characteristics on UO PWS’ well-being, despite heightened concern about social consequences of stuttering within UO society.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-34
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Fluency Disorders
StatePublished - Dec 2017


  • Culture
  • Experience of Stuttering
  • Quality of Life
  • Secular/Traditional Jews
  • Ultra-Orthodox Jews


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