[sw-l] Writing Mouth Movements in Different Cultures

Shane Gilchrist Ó hEorpa shane.gilchrist.oheorpa at FRANCISMAGINN.ORG
Thu Jan 27 20:23:27 UTC 2005


From: owner-sw-l at majordomo.valenciacc.edu
[mailto:owner-sw-l at majordomo.valenciacc.edu] On Behalf Of Valerie Sutton
Sent: 27 January 2005 18:01
To: sw-l at majordomo.valenciacc.edu
Subject: [sw-l] Writing Mouth Movements in Different Cultures

SignWriting List
January 27, 2005

Stefan Wohrmann wrote:

I use SW as a tool to support deaf children in their efforts to learn

According to your other question - if I understand that right - well all I
can tell is that in German Sign Language the mouthmovements are a very
important part.

Dear SW List and Stefan and Charles -
Thank you Stefan for your interesting discussion...SignWriting is used in
different ways for different purposes. A lot of these issues are cultural,
and also related to the purpose of the document you are writing...

I know, Stefan, you told us once that when you are writing true German Sign
Language (DGS), that is signed by Deaf adults in the German Deaf Community
(not related to children or teaching spoken German)...that you also write
the specific facial expressions needed to write the grammar of true
DGS...and that some of those facial expressions are not exactly the same as
mouthing German words...So I know you have experienced this too...

So we are talking about two different worlds...the world of a teacher with
Deaf students, and the world of Deaf poetry and literature that is not
connected in any way to the spoken language of the country...

Or perhaps it is in Germany, but not in the US...so that is why Charles
asked the question...because as Americans we have had different
experiences...Plus neither Charles nor I are teachers of young Deaf

We all would write differently in different cultures and that is perfectly
ok! SignWriting is flexible enough to meet everyone's needs...

Here in the US there is not as much mouthing as you have in Northern
Europe...so each culture is different...I am curious what it is like in the
Philippines, or in Malaysia or even other European countries? I suspect
facial expressions vary widely...depending on the surrounding

And meanwhile, Stefan, I commend you for creating a bridge for the German
parents of Deaf children into the world of signed languages...and giving a
bridge to the Deaf students into the world of spoken languages...That is a
true gift! And your Mundbildschrift is really working in Germany. I suspect
it would not in the US...but you never know...it has not been tried yet!
smile... Val ;-)

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