Chinese Sign LanguagePrint
Ethnic population: 20,040,000 deaf persons in China (2006 China Disabled Persons’ Federation).
Southern Chinese Sign Language (Shanghai Sign Language). Few signs of foreign origin. Negative clauses share similarity with British Sign Language.
Classmates and factory coworkers are channels of dissemination. Now specialized deaf colleges use CSL. All domains. All ages.
Developed late 1980s. There are also Chinese character signs. Others use home sign languages. Not influenced by American Sign Language [ase]. 550 schools for the deaf, 77 schools for the deaf and the blind. In addition to signs, Chinese Sign Language also uses an alphabetic spelling system (analogous to pinyin in Mandarin [cmn]) and can signify tones with facial gestures. Shanghai Sign Language is the prestige dialect.