A Language in Space: The Story of Israeli Sign Language by Irit Meir

By Irit Meir

This English version of A Language in area: the tale of Israeli signal Language, which obtained the Bahat Award for many notable publication for a normal viewers in its Hebrew version, is an advent to signal language utilizing Israeli signal Language (ISL) as a version. Authors Irit Meir and Wendy Sandler provide a glimpse right into a variety of interesting descriptions of the ISL group to which linguists and different researchers would possibly not have entry. An underlying premise of the ebook is that language is a psychological approach with common houses, and that language lives via humans. a transparent and fascinating learn, A Language in area addresses suitable features of signal language, together with the main summary questions and concerns regarding society and neighborhood. Divided into 3 components, the ebook covers: the linguistic constitution of Israeli signal Language; the language and its group; and a large depiction of ISL and the contribution of signal language learn to linguistic thought. This publication is meant for linguists (with or and not using a heritage in signal language), psychologists, sociologists, educators, scholars, and somebody with an curiosity within the human ability for language.

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Additional info for A Language in Space: The Story of Israeli Sign Language

Sample text

The syllable fit has a simple end (or ‘coda’), while fist contains a cluster of two consonants in that position. It should come as no surprise that the signs of sign languages also have other formational characteristics in addition to the specification of handshape, location, and movement. The description of signs includes such additional parameters as number of hands and their roles in the sign, type of movement, and the presence of nonmanual components. We will describe the role of each of these in turn.

One of these is orientation of the hand, a category that distinguishes the signs COMPARE and VACILLATE, pictured in Figure 2–4. In COMPARE, the palms of the hands are oriented upwards, and in VACILLATE, they are oriented downwards. The meaningless formational units of signs, then, belong to three major categories: handshape, location, and movement. Each category contains a list of units (the various possible individual handshapes, locations, and movements) which together comprise the unit inventory of each sign language.

While Stokoe used minimal pairs from American Sign Language, we present minimal pairs from Israeli Sign Language, the language that is the object of our study. The principle is the same: minimal pairs reveal the distinct meaningless units that combine to make a sign language word. The signs SAY and ASK shown in Figure 2–1 are almost identical; they are a minimal pair. (a) SAY (b) ASK FIGURE 2–1. Minimal pair in ISL, distinguished by handshape. In both signs, the hand moves in an arc path from the mouth forward.

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