|Itís Not What You Sign,|
Itís How You Sign It
American Sign Language (ASL) involves much more than the hands. In their Deaf Tend Your: Non-manual Signals in American Sign Language (1996), Byron Bridges and Melanie Metzger point out that the facial area is rich in morphological, lexical, and syntactic meaning. Until recently, however, eyebrow lifts, puffed cheeks, movements of the mouth, head tilts, and eye gazes have been relatively unexplored in ASL linguistics. In this investigation of how to express politeness using the pragmatics of ASL, Hoza (Univ. of New Hampshire, Manchester) examines two forms of politeness: requests and rejections. He debunks the myth that ASL signers are always necessarily more direct than English speakers in their communication style. The book is written in an easy-to-understand style, and the pictures of the nonmanual signals are clear and easy to follow. That said, a companion DVD illustrating the authorís numerous examples of politeness forms would have served readers well. Summing Up: Recommended. All readers, all levels.
Jack Hoza is Director of the Sign Language Interpretation Program at the University of New Hampshire, Manchester, NH.
ISBN 978-1-56368-352-7, 6 x 9 casebound, 248 pages, tables, figures, photographs, references, index
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