A survey of sign language differences among deaf adults in Zimbabwe

This paper investigates differences in signs used in sign language by deaf adults in Zimbabwe. A comparison is made of signs used in five different regions, viz. Mashonaland, Manicaland, Masvingo, Midlands and Matabeleland. The research is limited to differences in signs for the same words. The test instrument was a 120-word vocabulary. A total of 40 deaf adults participated in the study. The results show that many verbs and nouns were signed the same in most regions while more pronouns and adjectives were signed differently. A fundamental characteristic observed in signs that were similar in all regions was that most of them were iconic. These signs take the shape of the real object or action they represent. In conclusion, implications of the findings for education and dictionarymaking are discussed. Bibliogr., sum.

Title: A survey of sign language differences among deaf adults in Zimbabwe
Author: Chimedza, Robert
Year: 1995
Periodical: Zimbabwe Journal of Educational Research (ISSN 1013-3445)
Volume: 7
Issue: 3
Period: November
Pages: 314-322
Language: English
Notes: biblio. refs.
Geographic terms: Zimbabwe
Southern Africa
Abstract: This paper investigates differences in signs used in sign language by deaf adults in Zimbabwe. A comparison is made of signs used in five different regions, viz. Mashonaland, Manicaland, Masvingo, Midlands and Matabeleland. The research is limited to differences in signs for the same words. The test instrument was a 120-word vocabulary. A total of 40 deaf adults participated in the study. The results show that many verbs and nouns were signed the same in most regions while more pronouns and adjectives were signed differently. A fundamental characteristic observed in signs that were similar in all regions was that most of them were iconic. These signs take the shape of the real object or action they represent. In conclusion, implications of the findings for education and dictionarymaking are discussed. Bibliogr., sum.