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From Spoken to Signed: American Sign Language Translation

Noah Buchholz, Linguistics

September 23, 2019 · 12:00 pm-1:30 pm · 144 Louis A. Simpson Building

Program in Translation and Intercultural Communication

One of the most common misconceptions about American Sign Language (ASL) is that it is simply a manually coded English. ASL is actually a language with its own grammar and vocabulary distinct from English. Moreover, the modality of ASL is different from the modality of English. ASL is visual and kinesthetic while English is spoken. Thus, ASL-English translation consists of dynamic exchanges between not only two different languages but also two different modalities. For this reason, ASL-English translation presents many unique translation issues that are not found in translations between two spoken languages. This talk will examine some of those unique issues and discuss the critical role ASL-English translation plays in the advocacy for Deaf people’s rights.

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