Depicting and describing meanings with iconic signs in Norwegian Sign Language
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionGesture. 2017, 375-399.
There is growing momentum towards a theory of languaging that acknowledges the diverse semiotic repertoires people use with each other. This paper contributes to this goal by providing further evidence from signed language discourse. In particular, we examine iconic signs from Norwegian Sign Language, which can be interpreted as both “regular” lexical signs and token depictions. This dual potential is manipulated by signers in context. We analyze these signs as descriptions and depictions, two different modes of representation. Then we compare these signs to some of the description and depiction that occurs in spoken language discourse. In this way we aim to present some of the advantages of using description and depiction in analyses of communication and interaction. By doing this, we also forge links between the languaging of speakers and the languaging of signers.