1887
Volume 33, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0155-0640
  • E-ISSN: 1833-7139

Abstract

This study explores contemporary attitudes to Australian Sign Language (Auslan). Since at least the 1960s, sign languages have been accepted by linguists as natural languages with all of the key ingredients common to spoken languages. However, these visual-spatial languages have historically been subject to ignorance and myth in Australia and internationally. Absorbing these views, deaf Australians have felt confused and ambivalent about Auslan. Whilst recognising the prestige of spoken and signed versions of the majority language and the low status of their own, they have been nevertheless powerfully drawn to sign language. In the past two decades, a growing awareness and acceptance of Auslan has emerged among deaf and hearing Australians alike, spurred by linguistic research, lobbying by deaf advocacy groups and other developments. These issues are explored using semi-structured interviews with deaf and hearing individuals, participant observation in the deaf community, and analysis of government and educational language policies.

Loading

Article metrics loading...

/content/journals/10.2104/aral1005
2010-01-01
2019-10-18
Loading full text...

Full text loading...

References

  1. Australian Association of the Deaf
    Australian Association of the Deaf. (2005, October 11). Learn to sign day [Media release].
    [Google Scholar]
  2. Australian Association of the Deaf
    Australian Association of the Deaf (2008) SignPost. RetrievedApril 9, 2008fromwww.aad.org.au/advocacy/signpost1.php.
    [Google Scholar]
  3. Baynton, Douglas C.
    (1996) Forbidden signs: American culture and the campaign against sign language. Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press. doi: 10.7208/chicago/9780226039688.001.0001
    https://doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226039688.001.0001 [Google Scholar]
  4. Branson, Jan ; Miller, Don
    (1993) Sign language, them deaf, and the epistemic violence of mainstreaming. Language and Education, 7(1), 21–41. doi: 10.1080/09500789309541346
    https://doi.org/10.1080/09500789309541346 [Google Scholar]
  5. (1998) Nationalism and the linguistic rights of deaf communities: linguistic imperialism and the recognition and development of sign languagesJournal of Sociolinguistics, 2(1), 3–34. doi: 10.1111/1467‑9481.00028
    https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-9481.00028 [Google Scholar]
  6. Branson, Jan and Miller, Don
    (2002) Damned for their difference: the cultural construction of deaf people as disabled. Washington, DC: Gallaudet University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  7. Brien, David
    (1991) Is there a deaf culture?In S. Gregory and G. Hartley (eds), Constructing deafness (pp.46–52). London: Open University and Pinter.
    [Google Scholar]
  8. Burns, Sarah
    (1998) Irish Sign Language: Ireland’s second minority languageIn C. Lucas (ed.), Pinky extension and eye gaze: language use in deaf communities (pp.233–274). Washington, District of Columbia: Gallaudet University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  9. Burns, Sarah, Matthews, Patrick and Nolan-Conroy, Evelyn
    (2001) Language attitudes. In C. Lucas (ed.), The sociolinguistics of sign languages (pp.181-216). Cambridge, District of Columbia: Cambridge University Press. doi: 10.1017/CBO9780511612824.009
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511612824.009 [Google Scholar]
  10. Commonwealth of Australia
    Commonwealth of Australia (1991) Australia's language: the Australian language and literacy policy: companion volume to the policy paper. Canberra: Australian Government Publishing Service.
    [Google Scholar]
  11. Edwards, Viv and Ladd, Paddy
    (1983) British Sign Language and West Indian Creole. In J. Kyle and B. Woll (eds), Language in sign: an international perspective on sign language (pp.147–158). London: Croom Helm.
    [Google Scholar]
  12. Johnson, Robert E., Liddell, Scott K. and Erting, Carol J.
    (1989) Unlocking the curriculum: principles for achieving access in deaf education. Gallaudet Research Institute Working Paper 89-3. Washington, District of Columbia: Gallaudet University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  13. Johnston, Trevor
    (1989) Auslan dictionary: a dictionary of the sign language of the Australian Deaf CommunityPetersham, New South Wales: Deafness Resources Australia.
    [Google Scholar]
  14. (1998) Signs of Australia: A new dictionary of Auslan (the sign language of the Australian Deaf Community). Parramatta, New South Wales North Rocks Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  15. Johnston, Trevor and Schembri, Adam
    (2007) Australian Sign Language: an introduction to sign language linguistics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. doi: 10.1017/CBO9780511607479
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511607479 [Google Scholar]
  16. Kannapell, Barbara
    (1980) Personal awareness and advocacy in the Deaf community. In C. Baker and R. Battison (eds), Sign language and the deaf community: essays in honor of William C. Stokoe (pp.105–116). Washington, District of Columbia: National Association of the Deaf.
    [Google Scholar]
  17. (1993) Language choice – Identity choice. Burstonsville, Maryland: Linstok Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  18. Kendon, Adam
    (1988) Sign languages of aboriginal Australia: cultural, semiotic and communicative perspectives. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  19. Klima, Edward S. and Bellugi, Ursula . With Battison, R. , Boyes-Braem, P. , Fischer, S. , Frishberg, N. , Lane, H. et al.
    (1979) The signs of language. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  20. Komesaroff, Linda
    (1994) Bilingual deaf adults: acquisition and use of language and literacies. Unpublished Master’s thesis, Deakin University, Melbourne, Australia.
  21. (1996) Removing the barriers in deaf education. Australian Journal of Education of the Deaf, 2(1), 40–44.
    [Google Scholar]
  22. Ladd, Paddy
    (1988) The modern deaf community. In D. Miles (ed.), British Sign Language: a beginner’s guide. London: BBC Books.
    [Google Scholar]
  23. Lane, Harlan
    (1984) When the mind hears: a history of the Deaf. New York: Random House.
    [Google Scholar]
  24. (1999) The mask of benevolence: disabling the Deaf community (1st ed.). San Diego, California: DawnSignPress.
    [Google Scholar]
  25. Le Master, Barbara
    (2003) School language and shifts in Irish Deaf identity. In L. Monaghan , C. Schmaling , K. Nakamura , and G. H. Turner (eds), Many ways to be deaf: international variation in Deaf communities (pp.153–172). Washington, District of Columbia: Gallaudet University Press
    [Google Scholar]
  26. Llewellyn-Jones, Miranda
    (1987) Bilingualism and the education of deaf children. In S. Gregory and G. M. Hartley (eds), Constructing deafness (pp.137–142). London: Open University in conjunction with Pinter.
    [Google Scholar]
  27. Monaghan, Leila
    (1996) Signing, oralism and the development of the New Zealand Deaf community: an ethnography and history of language ideologies. Unpublished PhD dissertation, University of California, Los Angeles, California.
  28. (2003) A world’s eye view: Deaf cultures in global perspective. In L. Monaghan , C. Schmaling , K. Nakamura and G. H. Turner (eds), Many ways to be deaf: international variation in Deaf communities (pp.1–24). Washington, District of Columbia: Gallaudet University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  29. Ozolins, Uldis and Bridge, Marianne
    (1999) Sign language interpreting in Australia, Melbourne: Language Australia.
    [Google Scholar]
  30. Padden, Carol and Humphries, Tom
    (1988) Deaf in America: voices from a culture. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press
    [Google Scholar]
  31. (2005) Inside Deaf culture. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press
    [Google Scholar]
  32. Parasnis, Ila
    (1998) Preface. In I. Parasnis (ed.), Cultural and language diversity and the deaf experience (pp.xi–xiii). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  33. Pearce, Tamara
    (2002) Challenges for Deaf students in postsecondary education. Access: The national disability issues journal, 4(5), 19–20.
    [Google Scholar]
  34. Power, Des
    (1996) Language, culture and community: deaf people and sign language in Australia, Occasional Paper No. 4. Griffith University, Brisbane: Centre for Deafness Studies and Research.
    [Google Scholar]
  35. Reagan, Timothy
    (2001) Language planning and policy. In C. Lucas (ed.), The sociolinguistics of sign languages (pp.145-180). Cambridge, District of Columbia: Cambridge University Press. doi: 10.1017/CBO9780511612824.008
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511612824.008 [Google Scholar]
  36. Romaine, Suzanne
    (1989) Bilingualism. Oxford: Blackwell.
    [Google Scholar]
  37. Sheen, Joan B.
    (1982) A study of the Victorian Deaf and Dumb Institution (now the Victorian School for Deaf Children) and areas of education associated with the Deaf 1860-1913. Unpublished Master’s thesis, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia.
    [Google Scholar]
  38. Slegers, Claudia
    (2007) Signing in: A socio-cultural study of deaf people in Melbourne. Unpublished PhD thesis, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia.
    [Google Scholar]
  39. Sutton-Spence, Rachel and Woll, Bencie
    (1999) The linguistics of British Sign Language: An introduction. New York: Cambridge University Press. doi: 10.1017/CBO9781139167048
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139167048 [Google Scholar]
  40. Valli, Clayton and Lucas, Ceil
    (2000) Linguistics of American Sign Language: an introduction. Washington, District of Columbia: Gallaudet University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  41. Van Uden, A.
    (1986) Sign languages of deaf people and psycholinguistics. In S. Gregory and G. M. Hartley (eds), Constructing deafness (pp.192–199). London: Open University in conjunction with Pinter.
    [Google Scholar]
  42. Woll, Bencie and Sutton-Spence, Rachel
    (2007) Sign languages. In D. Britain (ed.), Language in the British Isles (pp.341–357). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. doi: 10.1017/CBO9780511620782.022
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511620782.022 [Google Scholar]
http://instance.metastore.ingenta.com/content/journals/10.2104/aral1005
Loading
  • Article Type: Research Article
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error