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SW-L  July 2010

SW-L July 2010

Subject:

Question Facial Symbol combinations

From:

Valerie Sutton <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

SignWriting List: Read and Write Sign Languages

Date:

Fri, 9 Jul 2010 10:59:11 -0700

Content-Type:

multipart/mixed

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (12 lines) , Eyebrows.jpg (12 lines) , text/plain (20 lines) , EyeCircles.jpg (20 lines)

SignWriting List
July 9, 2010

Hello List members!

I just received this question...

Question:
> Is there a rule that "prevents" single eyebrows, eyes, etc. from being placed in a mis-matched way with other related symbols? What kind of rules does SignWriting have for placing the single versions of the eyes, eyebrows, etc.? Or are there no rules, but simply what is readable or common sense?




Val's answer: The latter is true..."what is readable or common sense" ;-) We never developed a rule for this. It is just common sense. We try to write, the best we can, the way signs look in real life, or the way the face feels in real life... Of course over time we have learned that what makes sense for some people, does not make sense for others... There are variations in how people see or perceive what they see and feel...so it is not a perfect rule, but it is what we have: "Write the best you can, how it looks and/or feels"... What is interesting with your example is, that it is not impossible to do that position with the face. There are some people who have more expressive eyebrows than other people...and I bet there are some people on this earth that could do those two eyebrows together as you have written them... So here are two guidelines that make sense to me: 1. What is linguistically relevant in one particular sign language? (Ethiopian Sign Language might have a different rule than American Sign Language, for example)... 2. What is physically possible? That varies as well... A funny one, and a truly impossible one, would be one eyeball rotating one direction and the other one rotating the opposite direction at the same time - now that one really would be silly, and you can write it using the ISWA symbolset- ha! So we leave it to the writer's common sense -

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