Jon Gajeweski (UConn)

22 Apr, 2pm, LH 302

In this talk, I will discuss whether and how degree is represented in American Sign Language. I will begin by attempting to place American Sign Language into typologies of comparative constructions that have been based primarily on evidence from spoken languages. Placing ASL in such typologies leads us to the question of the role of iconicity in the representation of degree in ASL and how this relates to constructions in spoken language that may make use of pragmatic resources such as co-speech gesture. The results of the investigation of the comparative are then tested against the existence/structure of related degree constructions including measure phrases, differentials and degree questions.