[ACLA-CAAL] FW: Call for Abstracts for special issue in Sign Language Studies - Theme: Doing linguistic ethnography in signing communities

Wernicke, Meike meike.wernicke at ubc.ca
Thu Jan 17 16:40:51 UTC 2019

Call for Abstracts

Special issue in Sign Language Studies

Theme: Doing linguistic ethnography in signing communities

Guest editors: Annelies Kusters, Lynn Hou

This special issue focuses on methodology when engaging in linguistic ethnography for studying everyday sign language use in their wider social, cultural and material contexts, in visual and tactile interactions with deaf and deaf-blind people and their deaf, deaf-blind, protactile and hearing interlocutors. In linguistics, much signed language research tend to involve filming deaf people signing in staged situations, and most often focusing on monologic or dialogic discourse. Linguistic ethnography expands that approach to include and capture communication practices in a holistic, dynamic way, including the study of naturally occurring interactions, as well as metalinguistic reflection. Recent work has taken an ethnographic approach to language used in diverse sociocultural settings, including village / indigenous signed languages, multilingual and multimodal urban contexts, family communication, educational institutions, and interpreting practices among deaf, deaf-blind, protactile, and hearing people. The analyses from these projects have expanded our understanding of how novel communication practices cohere; how new sign languages emerge in families and deaf-blind signing; how deaf, deafblind, and hearing people negotiate communication with different modes of access to the environment, and how experiences of these situations are qualified in metalinguistic discourse (such as in language ideologies).

In this special issue, we seek submissions that explore linguistic ethnography as an approach that can maximize these frameworks, and as such contribute to our understanding of what linguistic ethnography can do. These submissions would focus on research methods, describing and evaluating ethnographic techniques such as participant observation, participatory methods, working in research teams, and so on. Each article will focus on one or more particular linguistic ethnographic case studies and include examples of data that was gathered, reflecting on what approaches were more successful or less successful and for whatever reasons. They must also include reflection on researcher positionality and how this positionality has shaped the research. Finally, the authors should reflect on how their work contributes to relevant literature e.g. on (linguistic) ethnography, and research methods in sign language and Deaf Studies.


Deadline for abstracts: 22 February 2019

Response to authors: 1 March 2019

First drafts due from authors: 15 June 2019

Comments due from reviewers: 31 August 2019

Revised draft due: 15 November 2019

Publication: Summer 2020 issue

Abstract guidelines:

 In your abstract (max 150-200 words) please include your name, affiliation if applicable, working title, a description of the methodology that was used, case(s) that will be discussed, and (preliminary) conclusions. Please send abstracts as an email attachment (in Word, not PDF) to both guest editors:

Annelies Kusters (Heriot-Watt University), a.kusters at hw.ac.uk<http://hw.ac.uk>

Lynn Hou (University of California, Santa Barbara), lhou at linguistics.ucsb.edu<mailto:lhou at linguistics.ucsb.edu>


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