# [Sw-l] [SPAM] RE: Forearm Rotation or axial motion symbols

rchannon1 at VERIZON.NET rchannon1 at VERIZON.NET
Fri Feb 2 21:27:06 EST 2018

```Thank you Valerie!  The video was very helpful!!  Here is what I understand:  the point of the rotation axis line is to show that the movement is very constricted – a very small radius.    Normally, when we move the arm thru space, we don’t stop to think about whether it’s the pinky or the thumb moving because everything is moving together. Aand because it’s a big motion, the thumb and pinky are moving in the same direction.  But with the rotation movements, we need to select either the thumb or the pinky and concentrate on the curve that one of them is making.

I think this is the remaining problem – how do I know if the curving arrow means the pinky or the thumb?  Because, when the hand rotates, the pinky and thumb have opposite curves.  For example, if I sign CLOSE, my pinky finger rotates from center  to right.  But my thumb rotates leftward from right to center.  So which symbol should I use? An arrow curving to the right or an arrow curving to the left?    (I’m just talking about the right hand here – of course the problem is the same for the left hand, but reversed)

I’m also thinking about what you said about a  fulcrum – the line that the hand rotates around. And in some cases, the pinky finger is near the center of the fulcrum – it hardly moves at all, but the thumb moves through a much bigger circle.  Other times, the thumb moves less, and the pinky moves more.

If I put my hands together for BOOK, and then I open my hands so the palms face me and the pinkies are together, the pinky stays still, and the thumbs move through a curve.  Right thumb moves right, left thumb moves left.

If I put my hands together in the same way, but instead of signing book, I keep the thumbs together and open the hands so the palms face toward the viewer, then the pinky fingers will move – right pinky to right, left pinky to left.

Or, if I want to sign CLOSE, then it’s as though each hand has its separate axis.  The pinky fingers stay close to that axis, and the thumbs move through a curve.

If I sign CLASS it’s as though there is a fulcrum that isn’t on either hand but in the space between the hands.  So that both the thumbs and pinky move.

I know that for some signwriting  symbols, you have to look at the other symbols to fully understand the meaning.  For example, rubbing can be straight or curved and you have to look at the associated arrows to determine which it is.  Is this also the case with rotation?  That to understand whether the curving movement refers to pinky or thumb or both, we need to look at the other symbols?

These are very interesting conversations – I think linguists still have a lot to learn about rotating movement.

Best, Rachel

From: SignWriting List: Read and Write Sign Languages [mailto:SW-L at LISTSERV.VALENCIACOLLEGE.EDU] On Behalf Of Valerie Sutton
Sent: Friday, February 02, 2018 6:03 PM
To: SW-L at LISTSERV.VALENCIACOLLEGE.EDU
Subject: Re: [SPAM] Forearm Rotation or axial motion symbols
Importance: Low

SignWriting List

February 2, 2018

Hello Rachel and everyone -

These symbols work well, and they are explained exactly where you say, Rachel, on page 142 in the Lessons in SignWriting Textbook, but I can see that it was hard for you to understand the explanation there, and it has been hard for others to understand too, so you are not alone.

So, first for others to understand, you can download the Lessons in SignWritng textbook here:

Lessons in SignWriting Textbook

http://www.signwriting.org/lessons/books/index.html#LessonsSW

You will find on page 142, it explains that the forearm is like an "axis".... a fulcrum...there is the axis and the rotation arrow showing movement around the axis...

Can you view this video? I just made it a few minutes ago...I still have to do the captions and I wish Adam could make a little video teaching these symbols? That would be so much better than my videos...I still do not know how to get a video to show up in an email - I must learn that...

https://youtu.be/gBDFQRfd_rI

I will write again when I have the strength and try to figure out how to explain them better than what is explained in the textbook already...

Val ;-)

On Feb 1, 2018, at 7:12 PM, rchannon1 at VERIZON.NET <mailto:rchannon1 at VERIZON.NET>  wrote:

Hello Everyone,

I have a new question – this time about rotation symbols.  In the lessons in signwriting book (maybe I should say bible 😊)  forearm rotation is discussed starting on page 142.  I am just having a hard time understanding how the symbols match with the actions.

The problem is that I don’t understand what the arrows mean in the rotation symbols.  I see that for example if the forearm points up, that is the wall plane and it is a double line.  But if the arrow shows a movement to the right, what does that mean?  Because technically the arm stays in one place and doesn’t move?

This is the set of signs that I am trying to understand:  (S2df)

񋎡

񋎢

񋎣

񋎤

񋎥

񋎦

񋎧

񋎨

񋎩

񋎪

񋎫

񋎬

񋎭

񋎮

񋎯

񋎰

If I am describing these symbols can I say something like the following:  (in all these symbols I understand we are talking about the right arm and it is in an upright position, pointing to the ceiling)

In the first symbol, the thumb moves from right to left and the palm first faces the signer and then faces the viewer

In the second symbol, the thumb moves left and down???

In the third symbol, the thumb moves in a curve from left to right so that the hand is first palm out to viewer and then palm in to signer?

The fourth symbol looks almot like the third

In the fifth symbol, the thumb moves left to right and the palm of the hand is first facing the viewer and ends facing the signer?

I am really confused…..

Rachel

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