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Studies in Swedish Sign Language: Reference, Real Space Blending, and Interpretation
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-3150-1492
2010 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis comprises four separate studies of the same material: a ten-minute Swedish Sign Language monologue. Study I describes the form, meaning, and use of the sign INDEX-c, a pointing toward the chest traditionally described as a first person pronoun. It is argued that INDEX-c is used not only with specific reference to the signer or a quoted signer, but also with non-specific reference. Contrary to what has been reported, INDEX-c is used not only for constructed dialogue, but also in constructed action. The analysis reveals two separate forms, as well, labeled as reduced INDEX-c and distinct INDEX-c, respectively. Study II describes the activities of the non-dominant hand when it is not part of a two-handed sign. A continuum is suggested, moving from different rest positions that do not contribute to the discourse content, via mirroring of the dominant hand, for example, to instances where the non-dominant hand produces signs of its own while the dominant hand remains inactive, i.e. dominance reversal. Several of the activities of the non-dominant hand, including the four types of buoys that are described, help structure the discourse by indicating the current topic. Study III uses Mental Space Theory and Conceptual Blending Theory to describe the use of signing space for reference. A correlation is shown between discourse content and the area in the signing space toward which signs are meaningfully directed, and also between these directions and which types of Real Space blends the signer mainly uses: token blends or surrogate blends. Finally Study IV looks in more detail at three segments of the discourse and their Real Space blend structure. An initial analysis of eight interpretations into spoken Swedish is also conducted, focusing on whether preselected content units (discourse entities and relations) are identified. A large number of Real Space blends and blended entities are argued to result in less successful renditions measured in terms of preselected content units.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Linguistics, Stockholm University , 2010. , 21 p.
Keyword [en]
Swedish Sign Language, INDEX-c, first person pronoun, non-dominant hand, buoys, Real Space blending, token blend, surrogate blend, signing space, constructed dialogue, constructed action, sign language interpreting
National Category
General Language Studies and Linguistics
Research subject
Sign Language
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-37026ISBN: 978-91-7447-014-7 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-37026DiVA: diva2:305811
Public defence
2010-05-21, sal G, Arrheniuslaboratorierna, Svante Arrhenius väg 20 C, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note
För att köpa boken skicka en beställning till exp@ling.su.se/ To order the book send an e-mail to exp@ling.su.seAvailable from: 2010-04-28 Created: 2010-02-04 Last updated: 2014-05-26Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Form and discourse function of the pointing toward the chest in Swedish Sign Language
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Form and discourse function of the pointing toward the chest in Swedish Sign Language
2004 (English)In: Sign Language and Linguistics, ISSN 1387-9316, Vol. 7, no 1, 3-30 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The object of this study is a sign glossed index-c, a point toward the signer’s chest, and its use in Swedish Sign Language. The sign has often been referred to as the first person pronoun of Swedish Sign Language, and it has been claimed that index-c is only used for non-first person reference in reported speech (Wallin 1987; Ahlgren 1991; Simper-Allen 1999). In the analyzed material, however, index-c is also used for non-first person reference when the actions and thoughts of a referent are rendered. A closer look also made it clear that there are actually two different forms of index-c, with different distribution, and that there appears to be an indefinite pronoun in Swedish Sign Language. What is presented here is thus an analysis of the use and meaning of two forms of the sign that was initially glossed index-c.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Amsterdam: Benjamins, 2004
Keyword
first person pronoun, index-c, non-first person reference, reported speech, Swedish Sign Language
National Category
General Language Studies and Linguistics General Language Studies and Linguistics
Research subject
Sign Language
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-20210 (URN)
Available from: 2010-04-28 Created: 2007-03-06 Last updated: 2013-11-15Bibliographically approved
2. The non-dominant hand in a Swedish Sign Language Discourse
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The non-dominant hand in a Swedish Sign Language Discourse
2007 (English)In: Simultaneity in Signed Languages: Form and Function / [ed] Vermeerbergen, M., Leeson. L, Crasborn, O, Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Company , 2007, 163-185 p.Chapter in book (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Signed language users can draw on a range of articulators when expressing linguistic messages, including the hands, torso, eye gaze, and mouth. Sometimes these articulators work in tandem to produce one lexical item while in other instances they operate to convey different types of information simultaneously. Over the past fifteen years, there has been a growing interest in the issue of simultaneity in signed languages. However, this book is the first to offer a comprehensive treatment of this topic, presenting a collection of papers dealing with different aspects of simultaneity in a range of related and unrelated signed languages, in descriptive and cross-linguistic treatments which are set in different theoretical frameworks. This volume has relevance for those interested in sign linguistics, in teaching and learning signed languages, and is also highly recommended to anyone interested in the fundamental underpinnings of human language and the effects of signed versus spoken modality.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Company, 2007
Series
Current issues in linguistic theory, ISSN 0304-0763 ; 281
Keyword
Swedish Sign Language, simultaneous constructions
National Category
General Language Studies and Linguistics
Research subject
Sign Language
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-20206 (URN)978-90-272-4796-4 (ISBN)
Note

Refereegranskad

Available from: 2010-04-28 Created: 2007-03-06 Last updated: 2013-11-15Bibliographically approved
3. Spatial Strategies in Descriptive Discourse: Use of Signing Space in Swedish Sign Language
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Spatial Strategies in Descriptive Discourse: Use of Signing Space in Swedish Sign Language
2008 (English)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The aim of the present study is to investigate the use of signing space, especially the potential relationship between the structure and function of the discourse. Data comes from a ten minute long, descriptive Swedish Sign Language monologue, where the signer retells parts of an autobiography. A native signer, who has not read the book, is sitting next to the camera as the addressee. This video recording was originally made for testing the interpreting skills of a group of professional sign language interpreters, and the signer did not know at the time that her signing would be the object of analysis. As the book she has read has both a main character and several other animate referents, the discourse contains frequent reference to these persons, and to their feelings, opinions, actions, and interactions. The general theoretical framework is that of Cognitive Linguistics, in particular Real Space blending (Liddell, 2003). The discourse is characterized by a complex interaction between discourse content and the signer’s use of signing space. Providing background and orienting material regarding the author, the signer uses the area to her left for meaningfully directed signs. In contrast, rendering the life of the author, as described in the book, the area in front of the signer is used for meaningfully directed signs. In sequences told from narrator’s perspective, in which signs are typically directed to the left, token blends dominate. In sequences with rapid switching between narrator’s perspective and discourse character’s perspective, signs are directed forward. Such sequences also abound with rapid switching between token blends and surrogate blends. Moreover, in token spaces containing more than one token, the tokens are frequently stacked in one area in signing space, rather than on opposite sides. Surrogates turn out to be used not only for constructed dialogue, but also for constructed action and thought, even for referents that are non-specific. The functionality of indexing in this discourse will also be discussed in some detail in this volume.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Dublin: Trinity College, Centre for Deaf Studies, 2008. 80 p.
Series
CDS/SLSCS monograph, ISSN 2009-1680 ; 2
Keyword
signing space, descriptive discourse, Cognitive Linguistics, Real Space blending, surrogate blends, token blends, directed signs
National Category
General Language Studies and Linguistics
Research subject
Sign Language
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-26065 (URN)
Available from: 2010-04-28 Created: 2009-03-09 Last updated: 2013-11-15Bibliographically approved
4. Real Space blends in Swedish Sign Language as an indicator of discourse complexity in relation to interpreting
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Real Space blends in Swedish Sign Language as an indicator of discourse complexity in relation to interpreting
2010 (English)In: Studies in Swedish Sign Language: Reference, Real Space Blending, and Interpretation, Stockholm: Department of Linguistics, Stockholm University , 2010Chapter in book (Other academic)
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Linguistics, Stockholm University, 2010
Keyword
Swedish Sign Language, Real Space blending, token blend, surrogate blend, constructed dialogue, constructed action, sign language interpreting
National Category
General Language Studies and Linguistics
Research subject
Sign Language
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-37142 (URN)978-91-7447-014-7 (ISBN)
Note

Delstudie i doktorsavhandling (sammanläggningsavhandling).

Available from: 2010-03-25 Created: 2010-02-11 Last updated: 2013-11-15Bibliographically approved

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