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Chapter 5

TEXTBOOK Chapter 5 - Are Sign Languages Real Languages?

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Craig Chambers

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Notes From Reading: P ART 1: LANGUAGE : HE HUMAN A BILITY(PGS . 3-91) C HAPTER 6: ARE SIGN L ANGUAGES R EAL LANGUAGES ?(P GS. 63-74) Introduction - Deaf people use a communication system that involves moving their hands, heads and torsos known as sign language - People who never used sign language as their major means of communication are typically called deaf people (with a small “d”) o These people are integrated into hearing society - People are hard of hearing or cannot hear at all (for whatever reason) and who use a sign language as their major means of communication are called Deaf people o With a capital “D”, indicating a cultural group as opposed to an audiological status o These people are generally not integrated into hearing society - Access to language is not just a basic human right but also the means by which so many of our civil rights are delivered o The fact that many deaf and hard-of-hearing people have experienced at least partial blockage to language access means that they have experiences a curtailment of rights Sign Language - Any sentence in English or any other spoken language can be conveyed in sign language - Sign languages can communicate information about people and objects that are not present, about specific times, and about very particular events Signed Versus Spoken Languages - The kinds of words that would be open to a nonarbitrary correspondence between meaning and sound are those whose meaning has to do with sound - The whole idea of onomatopoeia is questionable o Linguists often m
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