Interrogatives in Ban Khor Sign Language

Angela M. Nonaka

in Deaf around the World

Published in print November 2010 | ISBN: 9780199732548
Published online January 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199866359 | DOI:
Interrogatives in Ban Khor Sign Language

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This chapter looks at question formation in a sign language isolate in Thailand that until recently was undocumented and undescribed. Interrogatives are found in every language, but like other language universals, they vary across languages with respect to several properties. Elucidating these similarities and differences expands our understanding of the extent of linguistic diversity. This study shows that yes-no questions in BKSL have many of the properties seen in yes-no questions in other sign languages. But the WH-question system has some characteristics unique, so far as we know, to this language. There are two WH-morphemes, and, while the range of questions for each is similar (who, what, when, etc.), the sense of the questions and their syntactic properties differ.

Keywords: sign language linguistics; Ban Khor Sign Language; sign language; Thailand; WH-questions; yes-no questions; sign language syntax

Chapter.  6967 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Language Teaching and Learning

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