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In this volume, editor Cynthia B. Roy presents a stellar cast of cognitive linguists, sociolinguists, and discourse analysts to discover and demonstrate how sign language users make sense of what is going on within their social and cultural contexts in face-to-face interactions. In the first chapter, Paul Dudis presents an innovative perspective on depiction in discourse. Mary Thumann follows with her observations on constructed dialogue and constructed action. Jack Hoza delineates the discourse and politeness functions of HEY and WELL in ASL as examples of discourse markers in the third chapter. Laurie Swabey investigates reference in ASL discourse in the fourth chapter. In Chapter 5, Christopher Stone offers insights on register related to genre in British Sign Language discourse, and Daniel Roush addresses in Chapter 6 the “conduit” metaphor in English and ASL. Jeffrey Davis completes this collection by mapping out the nature of discourse in Plains Indian Sign Language, a previously unstudied language. The major thread that ties together the work of these varying linguists is their common focus on the forms and functions of sign languages used by people in actual situations. They each provide new keys to answering how thoughts expressed in one setting with one term or one utterance may mean something totally different when expressed in a different setting with different participants and different purposes.
The essays in this volume examine the discourses of Cultural China from a glocalization perspective, and attempt to understand contemporary Cultural China by recording, describing and explaining its current discourses.
Morphemes for Morris Halle
Literacy Education in Multicultural Institutions
Conflicts surrounding linguistic diversity are central to Diverse by Design, an institutional case study of an Hispanic-Serving Institution—in fact, the most ethnically diverse university in the midwest—situated within a metropolitan area shaped by immigration and migration. Christopher Schroeder examines the interactions of the institution and individuals, highlighting a cohort of Latino students enrolled in a special admissions program. He analyzes the ways that institutional language policies and literacy philosophies shape student experience within this institution, where ethnolinguistic diversity is framed as an educational obstacle to overcome rather than an intellectual opportunity to exploit.
El espanol en contacto con otras lenguas is the first comprehensive historical, social, and linguistic overview of Spanish in contact with other languages in all of its major contexts in Spain, the United States, and Latin America. In this significant contribution to the field of Hispanic linguistics, Carol A. Klee and Andrew Lynch explore the historical and social factors that have shaped contact varieties of the Spanish language, synthesizing the principle arguments and theories about language contact, and examining linguistic changes in Spanish phonology, morphology and syntax, and pragmatics. Individual chapters analyze particular contact situations: in Spain, contact with Basque, Catalan, Valencian, and Galician; in Mexico, Central, and South America, contact with Nahuatl, Maya, Quechua, Aimara, and Guarani; in the Southern Cone, contact with other principle European languages such as Portuguese, Italian, English, German, and Danish; in the United States, contact with English. A separate chapter explores issues of creolization in the Philippines and the Americas and highlights the historical influence of African languages on Spanish, primarily in the Caribbean and Equatorial Guinea. Written in Spanish, this detailed synthesis of wide-ranging research will be a valuable resource for scholars of Hispanic linguistics, language contact, and sociolinguistics.
A Multilingual Model
The lingua franca role of English, coupled with its status as the official language of ASEAN, has important implications for language policy and language education. These include the relationship between English, the respective national languages of ASEAN and thousands of local languages. How can the demand for English be balanced against the need for people to acquire their national language and mother tongue? While many will also need a regional lingua franca, they are learning English as the first foreign language from primary school in all ASEAN countries. Might not this early introduction of English threaten local languages and children’s ability to learn? Or can English be introduced and taught in such a way that it can complement local languages rather than replace them? The aim of this book is to explore questions such as these and then make recommendations on language policy and language education for regional policymakers. The book will be important for regional policymakers and language education professionals. It should also benefit language teachers, especially, but by no means exclusively, English language teachers. The book will be of interest to all who are interested in the development of English as an international language and the possible implications of this upon local languages and cultures.
Modernity and Management
English in Singapore provides an up-to-date, detailed and comprehensive investigation into the various issues surrounding the sociolinguistics of English in Singapore. Rather than attempting to cover the usual topics in an overview of a variety of English in a particular country, the essays in this volume are important for identifying some of the most significant issues pertaining to the state and status of English in Singapore in modern times, and for doing so in a treatment that involves a critical evaluation of work in the field and new and thought-provoking angles for reviewing such issues in the context of Singapore in the twenty-first century. The contributions address the historical trajectory of English (past, present and possible future), its position in relation to language policy and multiculturalism, the relationship between the standard and colloquial varieties, and how English can and should be taught. This book is thus essential reading for scholars and students concerned with how the dynamics of the English language are played out and managed in a modern society such as Singapore. It will also interest readers who have a more general interest in Asian studies, the sociology of language, and World Englishes.
Personal Experience Narratives in American Sign Language
Personal narratives are one way people code their experiences and convey them to others. Given that speakers can simultaneously express information and define a social situation, analyzing how and why people structure the telling of personal narratives can provide insight into the social dimensions of language use. In Extraordinary from the Ordinary: Personal Experience Narratives in American Sign Language, Kristin Jean Mulrooney shows that accounts by Deaf persons expressed in ASL possess the same characteristics and perform the same function as oral personal narratives. Mulrooney analyzes 12 personal narratives by ASL signers to determine how they “tell” their stories. She examines the ASL form of textual narration to see how signers use lexical signs to grammatically encode information, and how they also convey perceived narration. In perceived narration, the presenter depicts a past occurrence in the immediate environment that allows the audience to partially witness and interpret the event. Mulrooney determined that ASL narratives reveal a patterned structure consisting of an introduction, a main events section for identifying and describing past occurrences, and a conclusion. They also can include background information, an explication section in which the presenter expands or clarifies an event, and a section that allows the presenter to explain his or her feelings about what happened. Liberally illustrated with photographs from videotaped narratives, Extraordinary from the Ordinary offers an engrossing, expansive view of personal narratives embodying the unique linguistic elements of ASL.
The Taiwanese Example
In the growing body of research on sign language linguistics, one area of inquiry considers an important component of all sign languages — handshapes — and whether the use of specific kinds increase in direct relation to the ease of their formation. Author Jean Ann provides significant clarification in her book Frequency of Occurrence and Ease of Articulation of Sign Language Handshapes: The Taiwanese Example. Ann employs a straightforward methodology in her examination of the use of Taiwan Sign Language (TSL) handshapes in five succinct chapters. In the first chapter, she discusses the two approaches linguists have taken toward understanding languages, and how these theories have influenced sign language researchers’ consideration of the ease of articulation and frequency of handshapes. In her second chapter, Ann delineates the physiology of hands and explains why certain digits move with greater dexterity than others. Ann applies this physiological information in the third chapter to construct a model for determining the ease of articulation of any logically possible handshape. She divides the handshapes into three categories, ranging from impossible to easy. In the fourth chapter, she applies her model to examine the patterns of TSL, first by describing the 56 handshapes identified in TSL, then determining how often each is used. She then compares the usage data to the handshapes’ ease of formation. The final chapter summarizes her findings and suggests implications of this work that are bound to generate further speculation and study on sign language handshapes in the future.