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"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more



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Media: Hawaiian Sign Language Distinct from ASL

Submitter: Paul Chapin

Submitter Email: pgchapin@gmail.com
Linguistic Field(s): Language Documentation
Genetic Classification

Media Body: Linguists say they have determined that a unique sign language, possibly dating back to the 1800s or earlier, is being used in Hawaii, marking the first time in 80 years a previously unknown language — spoken or signed — has been documented in the U.S.

Researchers will formally announce their findings this weekend showing it's not a dialect of American Sign Language, as many long believed, but an unrelated language with unique vocabulary and grammar. Only about 40 people, most in their 80s, are known to currently use Hawaii Sign Language, meaning the discovery comes just as the language is on the cusp of disappearing.

Full story:
http://news.yahoo.com/hawaii-sign-language-found-distinct-language-182356712.html
Issue Number: 24.1205
Date Posted: March 02, 2013

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