forum SignWriting List Forum
  Message 1640  |  Previous | Next  [ Up Thread ] Message Index
From:  "Judy A. Kegl"
Date:  Fri Jul 10, 1908  6:13 pm
Subject:  Re: proper names

This is a quickie and I haven't read all but here is the deal with Nicaragua
on the acronym front. Please, they use the term Idioma de Seņas de
Nicaragua. When I speak of it in translation I use the term "Nicaraguan
Sign Language" but I NEVER use the acronym NSL. If an acronym were to be
used I would use ISN, but I prefer to avoid that. Why? If you look at the
Signed languages of the world most of them have had their SIGN supplanted by
a signed acronym from the dominant language label for the language. I find
this disturbing and certaining an issue to be left in the hands of the
individual Deaf communities. In Central America, acromnyms are usually
"pronounceable" thus even ISN is not a typical label. Please let the Deaf
community there label the language as they choose. It takes a little more
effort to spell out the name, but I do it out of respect. Even ASL has lost
its name to an English-based acronym.

--Judy Kegl
Linguistics Program
University of Southern Maine
96 Falmouth Street
Portland, ME 04104-9300

Phone: 207-780-4531
Fax: 207-780-5561
e-mail: ,

>From: "Angus B. Grieve-Smith"
>To: SignWriting List
>Subject: Re: proper names
>Date: Fri, Aug 6, 1999, 1:13 PM

> On Thu, 5 Aug 1999, Joe Martin wrote:
>> Seems to me...
>> We should all be careful about this "correct names" business. The
>> correct name for anything is whatever the users of the language stick
>> with-- ---and ain't nobody yet figgered out how to affect the process!
> That's not entirely true, Joe. Various issues of authority can
> influence those users to stick with one name or another. The relationship
> between the Flemings and the Walloons is pretty sticky, and I'd imagine
> the Flemings wouldn't be too happy to have a language that they don't
> speak referred to as "Belgian Sign Language."
> In actuality, though, the language we're talking about is English,
> and it's hearing Americans like you and me who are the users of this
> language. So what we stick with goes.
> The point I'm trying to make is that we should get away from this
> one-to-one mapping between spoken and signed languages. Why do the
> initials for a signed language used in Brazil have to be in Portuguese,
> and those for a signed language used in Belgium have to be in French, or
> Flemish? Roman-based sign writing systems have the advantage that you can
> have initials in the signed language, not in some spoken language.
> --
> -Angus B. Grieve-Smith
> Linguistics Department
> The University of New Mexico

  Replies Author Date
1641 Re: proper names Darline Clark Gunsauls Sun  8/8/1999
1643 Re: proper names Michael Everson Sun  8/8/1999
1646 Re: proper names Valerie Sutton Sun  8/8/1999
1648 Re: proper names barbara o'dea Sun  8/8/1999
1651 Re: proper names Michael Everson Sun  8/8/1999

  Message 1640  |  Previous | Next  [ Up Thread ] Message Index