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Reiterative Code-Switching: Argument-Marking in Cena

Stoianov, Diane; Silva, Anderson Almeida; Nevins, Andrew; (2023) Reiterative Code-Switching: Argument-Marking in Cena. Sign Language Studies , 23 (3) pp. 386-423. 10.1353/sls.2023.a899424. Green open access

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Abstract

Situations of language contact are often the norm for sign languages. This article investigates a case of unimodal contact between Cena, a young sign language in its third generation that is used in a small rural community in Brazil, and Libras, the national sign language of Brazil. Our analysis concerns one by-product of this contact: reiterative code-switches, wherein signers produce a sequence of two signs—one from each language—with the same meaning to label a single referent. We consider several motivations detailed in existing literature on code-switching, before proposing an explanation motivated by the disambiguation of reversible (therefore potentially ambiguous) verb events, primarily by using reiteration to focus agents. We suggest that with this phenomenon, we see signers employ a previously unattested strategy to mark arguments and thereby aid syntactic disambiguation.

Type: Article
Title: Reiterative Code-Switching: Argument-Marking in Cena
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1353/sls.2023.a899424
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1353/sls.2023.a899424
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the version of record. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Cena, Libras, Brazil, village sign language, code-switching, deaf.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Linguistics
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10176123
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