Sign Language Studies

Sign Language Studies
Volume 6, Number 4, Summer 2006

CONTENTS

Commentary

Articles

    McKee, David.
    Kennedy, Graeme D.
  • The Distribution of Signs in New Zealand Sign Language
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    Subject Headings:
    • New Zealand Sign Language -- Lexicology.
    Abstract:
      Until now, teachers and learners of NZSL have not had access to information on the most frequently used signs in the Deaf community. This article describes the first study of the distribution of signs in New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). We hope that it will help teachers of NZSL make decisions about which signs to teach first and suggest questions for investigation into other signed languages using a corpus analysis approach.
    Baynton, Douglas C.
  • "The Undesirability of Admitting Deaf Mutes": U.S. Immigration Policy and Deaf Immigrants, 1882-1924
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    Subject Headings:
    • Deaf -- Government policy -- United States.
    • United States -- Emigration and immigration -- Government policy.
    Abstract:
      When the federal government began in the 1880s to regulate immigration, the exclusion of what were termed "defectives" was one of the primary aims. Deaf people were among the thousands of disabled immigrants turned back each year at U.S. ports as "undesirables." Stereotyped as economically dependent and as carriers of potentially defective genes, deaf immigrants were seen as a threat to the nation. The advent of immigration restriction was one aspect of a pervasive and intensified stigmatization of disability during this period, which also saw the widespread incarceration of mentally disabled people in institutions, the sterilization of the "unfit" under state eugenic laws, the suppression of sign language, and a growing tendency to exclude disabled people from social and cultural life.
    Holt, Gineke ten.
    Hendriks, Petra, 1964-
    Andringa, Tjeerd.
  • Why Don't You See What I Mean? Prospects and Limitations of Current Automatic Sign Recognition Research
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    Subject Headings:
    • American Sign Language -- Verb.
    • American Sign Language -- Computer-assisted instruction.
    Abstract:
      This article presents an overview of current automatic sign recognition research. A review of recent studies, as well as on our own research, has identified several problem areas that hamper successful sign recognition by a computer. Some of these problems are shared with automatic speech recognition, whereas others seem to be unique to automatic sign recognition. These latter difficulties include context dependency, determination of the basic units of modeling, the ability to distinguish between signs and gestures, movement epenthesis, and repetition within signs. As a possible solution to these problems, bottom-up processing should perhaps be supplemented with top-down processing.
    Shaw, Sherry.
  • Launching International Collaboration for Interpretation Research
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    Subject Headings:
    • American Sign Language -- Transliteration -- Study and teaching.
    Abstract:
      The expansion of interpretation research projects across national boundaries contributes to improved personal, professional, and intellectual outcomes for researchers and practitioners. Establishing and maintaining these collaborative teams may be especially beneficial to strengthening the research agenda of new researchers. Conducting international studies requires intercultural sensitivity in all stages of a project (Deaf culture as well as ethnicity-related cultures) and has the potential to combine culture-specific perspectives and expertise for a more comprehensive application of results. The project design, supported by literature on international joint ventures, was a process of organizing stable international research collaboration that incorporated interdisciplinary expertise at three universities (University of Arkansas–Little Rock, University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, and the Karl-Franzens-University of Graz, Austria). This article follows the project through its conceptualization and initial study (2002), expansion beyond the initial research project (2004), data collection, analysis, and dissemination (2005). It presents potential options for data analysis and a description of the sample (n = 1,546). Topics of discussion include applying international joint venture stability research to establishing and maintaining research alliances, improving communication and collaborative skills, identifying mutually beneficial research topics with international universities, and applying results to the participating programs.

Brief Notices

  • Brief Notices
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    Subject Headings:
    • Lambert, Louis-Marie, 1814-1892. Dictionnaire de la langue des signes française d'autrefois: le langage de la physionomie et du geste mis à la portée de tous (1865).
    • Schick, Brenda S. (Brenda Sue), 1952-, ed. Advances in the sign language development of deaf children.
    • Marschark, Marc, ed.
    • Spencer, Patricia Elizabeth, ed.

Index




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