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From:  Shepard-Kegl
Date:  Thu Dec 16, 1999  5:59 am
Subject:  Re: writing compounds

Just browsing through my glossary here, I am looking for a pattern (of
sorts). I think we have been hyphenating where compounds might be
misinterpreted in written form. For example, the sign for divorce is fairly
long and, broken down, is the sign for marriage plus cut and apart. Is it a
compound? We surely do not use any hyphens when we write it. Then, there
is a sign for "farm cooperative" which is formed by AREA + COOPERATION, but
there's no hyphen here, either. There are two signs for farmer which are
formed in wholly different ways, but are quite synonymous. The second is
formed by FARM plus MAN (or FARM plus WOMAN, I suppose). There is a hyphen
in this instance, as we often use in compounds formed with MAN or WOMAN. Of
course, I can't truthfully say, "This is what the Nicaraguan Deaf do"
because when it comes to SW, I personally have a great deal of input. As I
recall, the problem came up when we prepared "The Boy Who Cried Wolf", since
the boy and the farmers appeared as subject and object in the same
sentences. BOY is CHILDMAN and FARMER is FARMMAN, and it got a little
confusing with the sign MAN appearing so much. The hyphen seemed to make
the reading more comprehensible. We ran into a similar situation with a
story about female and male pirates, and the hyphens really helped. (The
language uses determiners and body shifts and head tilts, etc., as well, but
the hyphens seemed to aid the readers.)
Eventually, the Deaf students will become sufficiently self-assured that
they will assume greater control over the direction and evolution of SW as
the writing system for their language.

I think you can appreciate how difficult my task is. I have to capture the
language with SW, but I cannot permit my SW writing conventions to affect
the language. Patience, patience.

-- James

  Replies Author Date
2511 Re: writing compounds Valerie Sutton Fri  12/17/1999

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