Cover

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Title Page, Copyright

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Contents

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Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-xiii

About fifteen years ago, I read four things that rocked my world: a thenunpublished paper by David Carina and Elizabeth Sagey, Mark Mandel's dissertation, drafts...

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Chapter One. Contextualizing this Book

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pp. 1-55

In the late 1960s, a surprising claim was made: the gestures that American Deaf people use in communication with one another actually had all the properties of a language (Stokoe, Casterline, and Croneberg 1965). Part of the evidence advanced to support...

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Chapter Two. The Anatomy and Physiology of the Human Hand

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pp. 56-86

First developing an understanding of the anatomy and physiology of the human hand and the relevance of each to handshapes will enable the reader to follow the theory I propose with respect to ease of articulation for handshapes. Although I adhere to the standard distinction...

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Chapter Three. A Model of Ease of Handshape Articulation

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pp. 87-138

In this chapter, I construct an explicit model of handshape ease of articulation based on the physiological facts explained in chapter 2. As I will show, the model allows us to divide logically possible handshapes into three groups: easy to articulate, difficult to articulate, and physicalIy impossible to articulate...

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Chapter Four. Ease and Frequen~y Compared

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pp. 139-180

To establish a relationship between ease of articulation and frequency of occurrence, I first had to examine how frequently different handshapes occur. For this study, I used the handshapes found in Taiwan Sign Language (TSL). I calculated two types of frequency...

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Conclusion

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pp. 181-190

This book explores the connection between ease of articulation and frequency of occurrence of handshapes in Taiwan Sign Language (TSL). Its central conclusion, based on what the evidence suggests, is that, although ease of articulation does not dictate frequency...

References

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pp. 191-203

Index

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pp. 204-209