forum SignWriting List Forum
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From:  James Womack
Date:  Fri May 15, 1998  4:24 am
Subject:  Re: Language History or Standardization of ASL

On Thu, 14 May 1998 14:38:57 EDT DEAF USA writes:
>In a message dated 98-05-14 11:21:35 EDT, you write:
>> and in another message - in a day or so - I will discuss what is
>> with the standardization of "sign spellings".
>I'm not sure you can apply the same idea to signwriting because you
>are describing motion and there are different signs for similar concepts

>in ASL. So you may standardize an individual sign, but I don't think you
>standardize what people sign for a given concept.

This is whatmade me hesitate a bit when I wrote my message on
this issue. Thanks.
>And as for regional differences, there is also a matter of what
>vocabulary is needed in a region. There is a big difference, for
example, between
>the things a city person will want to talk about vs. someone who lives
on a farm,
>and there needs to be signs for those things. There are also special
>interests, hobbies, and professions within which particular vocabulary
>develop. Sometimes the same sign may mean something a bit different
>on the context. This happens in many (and probably all) languages.

You said what was nagging me in the back of my head but would
come forward at the time.

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