18 January 2010

Sign + Gesture = Speech + Gesture?

Myriam Vermeerbergen is Assistant Professor Flemish Sign Language at the Department of Applied Language Studies, Lessius University College (Antwerp, Belgium) and Affiliated Researcher at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven.

Presenter: Dr Myriam Vermeerbergen
Title: Sign + Gesture = Speech + Gesture?
Date: 27th January 2010
Time: 7pm - 9pm
Venue: Business Executive Centre, Heriot-Watt University, EH14 4AS (how to get there)
BSL/English Interpreter: Kyra Pollitt

All welcome!

Download the poster

UPDATE: You can see some photos and video clips from the seminar at http://edsign34.blogspot.com/2010/02/video-clips-from-myriam-vermeerbergens.html.

UPDATE: View the slides

When speakers talk, they gesture too. It even seems that speakers must gesture when they speak, and they primarily do so using their hands. Gestures appear to be an integral part of linguistic communication.

But what about people who use sign language? Do they also use gestures? Do the gestures and the signs combine or remain distinct?

In her presentation, Myriam will explain how simultaneous constructions in sign languages compare with various types of speech combined with gesture. The comparison reveals many more similarities than expected, both in form and function, and invites us to re-examine gesture in sign languages.

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