Volume 6, Issue 1
  • ISSN 2215-1354
  • E-ISSN: 2215-1362
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Abstract (Japanese Sign Language)

The numerals 10, 100 and 1,000 are expressed variably in Japanese Sign Language (JSL) and Taiwan Sign Language (TSL), two languages that also have historic links. JSL was used in deaf schools that were established in Taiwan during the Japanese colonial era, leaving a lasting impression on TSL, but complex sociolinguistic situations have led to different outcomes in each case (Fischer, 2014Sagara, 2014). This comparative sociolinguistic analysis is based on two datasets comprising a total of 1,100 tokens produced by 72 signers from the Kanto and Kansai regions (for JSL) and the cities of Tainan and Taipei (for TSL). Mixed effects modelling reveals that social factors such as the age and region of the signer have a significant influence on how the variable is realised. This investigation shows how careful cross-linguistic comparison can shed light on variation within and between sign languages that have been in contact, and how regional variation in one language may influence regional variation in another.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): Japanese Sign Language; numerals; Taiwan Sign Language; typology; variation
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