Our language use, interpretation and assumptions travel with our cultural background. This article on the differences in American Sign Language usage is a reminder for those of us trying to improve our practices of multicultural communications. Communications in its many forms are another way to learn about each other, not just about getting our message across, but to do it effectively and meaningfully.
Visit our booth at DeafNation Saturday, October 20, 9am – 5pm at Seattle Center Exhibition Hall as we try to learn more and share our information.
Sign language use can vary regionally and across cultures and native languages. A recent article in the Washington Post describes the roles that identity, history and culture play in languages, and most visibly in American Sign Language. Black and white Deaf Americans use different signs and body language in American Sign Language, complicating understanding and interpretation. Different signs are used regionally in the United States; even ASL users in Puget Sound practice a wide variety of local signs. Read more at Sign language that African Americans use is different from that of whites.