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Flashcards in Sign Language Deck (11)
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What is unusual?

There are many ways languages varies between people - everyone has their own experience

Impaired language production or processing - agnosia, dyslexia

Enhanced language production or processing - poets, writers


Example of language talent

Hearing one language and producing another one simultaneously


Why study people with unusual language abilities?

There different abilities are interesting in themselves - understand the nature of these and how they influence lives

Aid of improve lives- raise awareness of diversity, treatments/therapies

Illuminate process of communication and language generally - stress test - patterns of advantage/difficulty highlight structure


Is sign language a language?



Are sign languages the same in all languages?

No, they rare distinct languages. BSL and ASL are not dialects like British and American English, shares some similar words but not mutually intelligible

different from sign supported language and makaton


What brain regions are used for sign language?

Broca and Wernicks area - lesions result in similar patterns of impairment as language - shows sign languages uses the same brain areas as spoken language


Similarities to spoken language

Sign language have their own grammar, vocal, prosody, have own phonology (handshakes, expressions)

Minimal pairs

Babies exposed to sign babble with their hands the same way speech-exposed babies do with sounds


What are the major parameters of sign language?

The form or configuration taken on by the hand
the orientation of the hand takes on while making the sound

the location in which the sound is performed

the movement the hand describes


What are minimal pairs?

Two words with different meanings that only differ by one sound e.g. pat/bat/car

ASL has minimal pairs - same location and gesture but different hand shape, will create a different sign


Differences to spoken language

Grammaticized facial expressions- these must be performed in order for meaning to be fully expressed, children acquire these at the same time. Leads to enhanced facial discrimination ability

Iconicity - they are not gesture or pantomime but contain iconic items


What does iconicity mean?

Sign languages are making gestures to iconoly represent something e.g. a book sign looks like a book opening