Modality-independent and modality-specific aspects of grammaticalization in sign languages

  • One type of internal diachronic change that has been extensively studied for spoken languages is grammaticalization whereby lexical elements develop into free or bound grammatical elements. Based on a wealth of spoken languages, a large amount of prototypical grammaticalization pathways has been identified. Moreover, it has been shown that desemanticization, decategorialization, and phonetic erosion are typical characteristics of grammaticalization processes. Not surprisingly, grammaticalization is also responsible for diachronic change in sign languages. Drawing data from a fair number of sign languages, we show that grammaticalization in visual-gestural languages – as far as the development from lexical to grammatical element is concerned – follows the same developmental pathways as in spoken languages. That is, the proposed pathways are modalityindependent. Besides these intriguing parallels, however, sign languages have the possibility of developing grammatical markers from manual and non-manual co-speech gestures. We will discussOne type of internal diachronic change that has been extensively studied for spoken languages is grammaticalization whereby lexical elements develop into free or bound grammatical elements. Based on a wealth of spoken languages, a large amount of prototypical grammaticalization pathways has been identified. Moreover, it has been shown that desemanticization, decategorialization, and phonetic erosion are typical characteristics of grammaticalization processes. Not surprisingly, grammaticalization is also responsible for diachronic change in sign languages. Drawing data from a fair number of sign languages, we show that grammaticalization in visual-gestural languages – as far as the development from lexical to grammatical element is concerned – follows the same developmental pathways as in spoken languages. That is, the proposed pathways are modalityindependent. Besides these intriguing parallels, however, sign languages have the possibility of developing grammatical markers from manual and non-manual co-speech gestures. We will discuss various instances of grammaticalized gestures and we will also briefly address the issue of the modality-specificity of this phenomenon.show moreshow less

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Metadaten
Author:Roland Pfau, Markus Steinbach
URN:urn:nbn:de:kobv:517-opus-10886
ISBN:1864-1857
Series (Serial Number):Linguistics in Potsdam (24)
Publisher:Universitätsverlag Potsdam
Place of publication:Potsdam
Document Type:Book
Language:English
Date of Publication (online):2006/11/29
Year of Completion:2006
Publishing Institution:Universität Potsdam
Release Date:2006/11/29
Tag:gesture; grammaticalization; modality; non-manuals; sign languages; typology
Pagenumber:97
RVK - Regensburg Classification:ES 175 ; ET 100
Organizational units:Extern / Extern
Dewey Decimal Classification:4 Sprache / 40 Sprache / 400 Sprache
Collections:Universität Potsdam / Schriftenreihen / Linguistics in Potsdam: LIP, ISSN 1864-1857
Publication Way:Universitätsverlag Potsdam
Notes extern:
In Printform erschienen im Universitätsverlag Potsdam:

Modality-independent and modality-specific aspects of grammaticalization in sign languages / Roland Pfau und Markus Steinbach. - Potsdam : Univ.-Verl., 2006. - 98 S. : Ill., graph. Darst. (Linguistik in Potsdam ; 24)
ISBN 978-3-939469-53-7
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