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3:7 Tuesday, July 31, 2001

Not To Be Ignored: The "Complexity of Signed Language"


In an unusual joint review, Library Journal praised two of Gallaudet University Press’s books in its June 15, 2001 issue.  Signed Languages: Discoveries from International Research, edited by Valerie Dively, Melanie Metzger, Sarah Taub, and Anne Marie Baer, and William C. Stokoe’s Language in Hand: Why Sign Came Before Speech are both “highly recommended” says Library Journal.  Read the complete review for the the two books (Signed Languages and Language in Hand) here.

Signed Languages presents the freshest, most innovative work from the sixth Theoretical Issues in Sign Language Research conference, which took place in 1998.  The 13 papers in this integrated volume focus upon previously ignored international signed languages, including the signed languages of the Netherlands, Sweden, Israel, Venezuela, and northern Nigeria.  You can read an excerpt here and also order Signed Languages at your exclusive subscriber rate of 20% off the regular price and discover how these renowned scholars examine in detail the complexity of signed language.”

In Language in Hand the late William C. Stokoe answers the provocative question, Did the first humans speak or sign?  According to Stokoe, past Professor Emeritus at Gallaudet University and the founding editor of Sign Language Studies, “signed language preceded spoken language.”  In order to support his proposed order of linguistic development, Stokoe uses the following four approaches : exploring the unique ability of visible signs to resemble what they represent, comparing human anatomy involved in gesture and speech to the anatomy of chimpanzees and other primates, examining signed languages still in use today among both hearing and hearing-impaired communities, and observing linguistic development in children.  Read Stokoe’s preface and order Language in Hand.

Gallaudet University Press Institute, the educational division of Gallaudet University Press, is staging an international conference “Dictionaries and the Standardization of Languages” on November 7–8, 2001, at the Gallaudet University Kellogg Conference Center in Washington, D.C.  For more information and to register, go to Dictionaries.gallaudet.edu.

CHOICE lauds Deaf American Literature: From Carnival to the Canon in its July 2001 issue stating that Cynthia Peters “has produced a truly seminal work of tremendous value to a variety of readers outside the Deaf community itself: sociologists, linguists, and those in the comparative literature field.”  Read the complete review and order Deaf American Literature: From Carnival to the Canon.


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