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From:  Valerie Sutton
Date:  Thu Jun 17, 1999  8:51 pm
Subject:  Phonemic way of writing

On Wed, 19 May 1999, Joe Martin wrote:
>Finally, I like the idea of different "spellings," and I wonder if what
>you are describing here is evolving a phonemic way of writing the symbols.
>That would be fascinating to see.


June 17, 1999

Actually, Joe, this has been happening slowly over the past 25 years..but
not on purpose. A phonemic way of writing is evolving in a natural way.

Back in the 1970's SignWriting was quite detailed. I remember once, while I
was giving a presentation back in 1978, someone in the audience was
critical, saying that SignWriting was "too phonetic", and then someone else
in the group stated that there was nothing wrong with the International
Phonetic Alphabet, and then a third person said "Yeah. But the
International Phonetic Alphabet is not use on a daily basis".

So I told the group that I hoped that it might evolve to something simpler,
for daily use. And I suspect that is what Steve and Dianne Parkhurst are
doing in Spain. They are working with native Deaf adults, so knowledge is
being assumed when they write, at least to a certain extent.

SignWriting can be either phonetic or phonemic - it depends on the writer
and what they want to convey. So that is why we have several "different
spellings" of the same signs in our dictionaries- just letting people write
as they "feel it", and may the best spelling win over time!

Valerie :-)

Valerie Sutton


The DAC, Deaf Action Committee for SW
Center For Sutton Movement Writing
an educational nonprofit organization
Box 517, La Jolla, CA, 92038-0517, USA

  Replies Author Date
1515 clythe Joe Martin Thu  6/24/1999

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