Exploring lexical gaps in Australian Sign Language for the purposes of health communication

Autor/a: MAJOR, George; NAPIER, Jemina; FERRARA, Lindsay; JOHNSTON, Trevor
Año: 2012
Editorial: Communication & Medicine, Vol. 9, nº 1 (2012) pp. 37-47
Tipo de código: Copyright
Soporte: Digital


Traducción e Interpretación


Until recently no linguistic research had been carried out on Australian Sign Language (Auslan) with regard to its use in healthcare settings, although anecdotal information suggests that the health lexicon of Auslanis strikingly under-developed. Tis paper describesa study that examined health terminology from the perspective of deaf people. Based on a thematic analysis of focus group data, the paper outlines strategiesthat deaf Australians report to use in communicating about health concepts that do not have established signs in Auslan. Participants described a variety of communicative strategies– including the use of fingerspelling, depiction and explanations– that theyemploy in order to circumnavigate lexical gaps whentalking about health. Te study provides a crucial starting point for a discussion of the implications of lexical gaps in Auslan and highlights issues of particular relevance for interpreters who take responsibility for brokering health terms and mediating health communication