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Sign Language in Indo-Pakistan

A description of a signed language

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Abstract

To find a suitable framework for the description of a previously undocumented language is all the more challenging in the case of a signed language. In this book, for the first time, an indigenous Asian sign language used in deaf communities in India and Pakistan is described on all linguistically relevant levels. This grammatical sketch aims at providing a concise yet comprehensive picture of the language. It covers a substantial part of Indopakistani Sign Language grammar. Topics discussed range from properties of individual signs to principles of discourse organization. Important aspects of morphological structure and syntactic regularities are summarized. Finally, sign language specific grammatical mechanisms such as spatially realized syntax and the use of facial expressions also figure prominently in this book. A 300-word dictionary with graphic representations of signs and a transcribed sample text complement the grammatical description. <br />The cross-linguistic study of signed languages is only just beginning. Descriptive materials such as the ones presented in this book provide the necessary starting point for further empirical and theoretical research in this direction.

Subjects: Syntax; Signed languages

  • Affiliations: 1: La Trobe University, Melbourne

References

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