Prof. Green publishes new article on her research into Nepalese sign language

January 18, 2018

Prof. Green's latest article, entitled "Performing Gesture: The pragmatic functions of pantomimic and lexical repertoires in a natural sign narrative," has just appeared in Vol. 16, No. 2 of the joural Gesture

Abstract: This article focuses on a signed performance by a deaf Nepali man who communicates in natural sign, which is similar to home sign but with greater cross-signer conventionality. The signer skillfully employs pantomimic (“gestural”) and lexical (“linguistic”) repertoires for distinct pragmatic purposes. In the narrative frame, he uses pantomime to vividly enact his morning routine; in the metanarrative frame, he utilizes lexical signs to directly address the audience. By examining the two repertoires’ formal characteristics and their relationship to different frames, this analysis showcases the signer’s communicative competency, demonstrates the relevance of pragmatics and genre to studies of all signed communicative modes, and challenges the idea that gesture is what language leaves behind.

Keywords: genre, deaf, language, lexical, gesture, communicative competency, pragmatics, Nepal, natural sign, performance, pantomime