"Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive." Anaïs Nin

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Monday, November 5, 2012

"Why Great Sign Language Interpreters Are so Animated" by Arika Okrent

There is an excellent article over at The Atlantic http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2012/11/why-great-sign-language-interpreters-are-so-animated/264459/ by Arika Okrent, linguist and author.

People so often misunderstand the importance of facial expressions and body placement when it comes to the language of ASL. I remember one comment here on my blog in reference to an ASL video where the person had the impression that the signer was angry and looking for a fight. So often people mistake passion, emphatic expression as anger.

Perhaps we can all use some ASL classes and learn more about our third most used language in America...it is American Sign Language, after all.

Thoroughly heck out that fabulous article by Arika Okrent. There are photos there breaking down the meaning of the message so excellently interpreted by Ms. Lydia Callis.


  1. For my 10% it is just how hearing people can not understand the facials and mannerism terps use with signing. A number of DEAF feel it makes deaf look silly if an hearing terp overdoes the facial aspect, and it is this over-egging of the facial part of signing, that people home in on, as none understand the sign and MIS-understand the exaggerated face-pulling that some terps use. I tuts ME off at times.. The quick 'paradoy' that went online straight after, was in fact drawing attention to that aspect. I don't know enough ASL to really criticise,but the facials DID look OTT at times.

  2. Did you know that your child’s ability to get and store information is present even at the tender age? And that using sign languages on the toddler would benefit them even in their adult life? thank you for sharing topic Signed Languages

  3. Yes, Petito, I did! My son was signing to me when he was only 8 months old! He could tell me if he was "hungry" or "thirsty" or wanted "milk" or "juice". :-) Sign Language builds communication skills, reading skills, and IQ in young children, just to name a few benefits.
    Thanks for stopping by and posting!