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American Annals of the Deaf

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Bilingualism and Identity in
Deaf Communities

Melanie Metzger, Editor

Now in Paperback!

Read chapter one.
Read reviews: Studies in Second Language Acquisition, APA Review of Books, The Sign Language Translator and Interpreter (SLTI).


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The Sixth Volume in the Sociolinguistics in Deaf Communities Series

From Studies in Second Language Acquisition

In this volume of the Sociolinguistics in Deaf Communities series, Metzger has edited 11 diverse topics addressing two themes: the perception of Deaf people and Deaf communities, and bilingualism. Deaf people's perception of themselves and their community is explored by authors who discuss an excellent array of topics, ranging from “miracle cures” for Deaf children in Mexico to the nature of name signs in the New Zealand Deaf community; from the linguistic rights of Deaf people in the European Union to a search for the roots of the Nicaraguan Deaf community; from a semiotic analysis of Argentine Sign Language to an analysis of how a Deaf child (American Sign Language) and his hearing family (English) make sense of each other's world views.

Metzger supports her second theme, bilingualism, with a broad and varied collection of articles. She includes authors whose work encompasses a variety of signed languages: codeswitching between English and Cued English, transliteration between spoken and signed Swedish (using research on spoken and signed English as a jumping-off point), bilingual education in Spain that also includes a brief but interesting history of Deaf education in that country, turn-taking among individuals who are deaf-blind and use tactile Swedish Sign Language and educational policy and signed language interpreters in the United States after more than 25 years of legal placement.

Metzger’s work offers a truly unique look at Deaf communities around the world. This volume is a welcome addition to any language educator’s library. It enhances our understanding of how Deaf people perceive themselves and their languages; as a result, it expands our understanding of the bilingual individual. The scope of this volume could have resulted in chaos but, with Metzger, we gain a deeper understanding of signed languages through glimpses of fascinating communities.

-- Christine Monikowski, National Technical Institute for the Deaf at Rochester Institute of Technology

Melanie Metzger is Professor and Chair, Department of Interpretation, Gallaudet University, Washington, DC.

ISBN 978-1-56368-589-7, ISSN 1080-5494, 6 x 9 paperback, 320 pages, references, index


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