Implications for Sociolinguistic Research among the Deaf

Autor/a: WOODWARD, James C.
Año: 1972
Editorial: Sign Language Studies, Vol. 1 (1972) pp. 1-7
Tipo de código: Copyright
Soporte: Digital


Lingüística » Lingüística de otras Lenguas de Signos


The purpose of this paper is to present a brief outline of the language situation of the deaf and to suggest areas for future sociolinguistic research. Unfortunately, despite many studies done on the language of deaf persons, there are few that are based on sound linguistic principles. For example, certain scholars (e.g. Furth) have stated that American Sign Language (ASL) is "not a verbal language" and that the deaf generally have poor English and are linguistically deficient. Even some studies that are linguistically based (e.g. Taylor) have ignored ASL and have concentrated on "errors" in the English of the deaf. Some linguistic work has been done on ASL. McCall generally used terminology of traditional English grammar couched in 1957 transformational rules to describe ASL. More reliable studies have been done, among them Stokoe (1960, 1965), which concentrate on a structural description of the "phonemes" of ASL, identifying them as cheremes. These reliable linguistic studies have pointed out that ASL and the ASL community is parallel in many ways to the complicated language situation in the hearing world.