[sw-l] "ASL" in SignPuddle for ASL

Valerie Sutton sutton at SIGNWRITING.ORG
Fri Jun 17 17:28:04 UTC 2005

> On Jun 17, 2005, at 10:08 AM, Kimberley A. Shaw wrote:
> the first entry for "ASL" in the ASL SignPuddle puts a tension sign
> over
> the "L" ... somebody who knows, would you please explain why? Is
> this a SW
> convention to designate fingerspelt acronyms?
> Best, Kim from Boston


Yes. The Tension Symbol was placed there because that is the way our
DAC Deaf staff members sign it...at the end of a lot of
fingerspelling (not all, just some)...there is a Tension
feeling...based on the fact that it is a name of a language...look at
the attached...The DAC also determined that there is Tension when
using the sign for American as an Adjective...American Sign Language
has tension on the word American...we discussed this at length and
came to the conclusion that the Tension feeling is used to get rid of
the sign for ER...for example, when Deaf people teach hearing people
they oftentimes add the person ER at the end of the word American,
when talking about a person, but when they sign among themselves,
with other skilled ASL signers they drop the ER and put a Tension on
the movement instead...so in the attached, the tension symbols are
important and came from official decisions at the time the dictionary
was first published in 1994...You will find Tension Symbols on names
of states too...the fingerspelling of those names of states become
signs in their own right...

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