|SignWriting List Forum|
Joe Martin |
Date: Fri Jun 30, 2000 11:47 am
Subject: JSL video
for the record, Val asked, regarding the first two signs on the Shyuwa
> Do you feel a facial expression is necessary for this sign? If so, how
> would you sign it?
My feeling was, no, for the second one, and for the first one, kinda. That
is, the guy is looking down, then he looks up, raises his hands and begins
to speak. A normal expression to accompany such an activity would be a
sort of "OK, here I go" look, which would include raised eyebrows. It
seems to me that this is what happened here, rather than a topic marker.
(Although I wouldn't argue too strongly.) A couple on signs on he does a
clear topicalization, when he holds up his four fingers. That one seems
significant, but compared to it, this first brow raise is pretty pallid.
So that's why I didn't write it.
Then too, the question..."is it neccesary to write it?"....gee,
I can only answer, "Necesary for what?" If we know what he is saying, then
we can decide if it means anything, and based on that, write it or not.
But when we don't know the language, just being scribes, that seems very
hard. Couldn't virtually *anything be significant? ( Westerners are
famous for ignoring the tones of Chinese, thus confusing "mother" and
"hemp." And I know that when I listen to African languags with "clicks"
in them, they don't seem to be part of the speech at all--just intruding
background noise.) Maybe in the language I am scribing, what I see as
an irrelevant detail might turn out to be some crucial thing like a verb
inflection. How would I know? But then, I can't write down every
teeny-weeny phonetic detail, either.
Oh dear, oh dear.
Joe Martin, Plain Old Ordinary Student
Top Left Corner USA