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From:  Charles Butler
Date:  Thu Feb 10, 2000  8:31 am
Subject:  Re: one gap - two gaps

In the attachment you loaded yesterday on bent index fingers, I am trying to
think of a minimal pair in ASL between a straight finger, a bent index
finger and a crooked index finger, and I honestly can't think of one.

If I were to write the sign [depend] I personally would write it with two
index fingers with tension. The sign for [question] has a transitory bent
index finger or a crooked index finger, but either would be read the same.
Are there positions in ASL that truly distinguish between a straight finger
and a bent one as opposed to completely crooked?

Very curious now, I would prefer to see the ASL used handset not multiply
handshapes unnecessarily. Just like the "a" in "hat" and the "a" in "hate"
are not pronounced the same, and therefore require a silent "e" to indicate
the difference, we don't change the 'a' but add a diacritical 'e' in
everyday writing, where the IPA has two distinct written shapes.

Charles Butler

  Replies Author Date
2817 Re: one gap - two gaps Valerie Sutton Mon  2/14/2000

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