Chinese Sign Language


A language of China

Alternate Names
Zhongguo Shouyu


Language Maps
Language Status

5 (Developing).


Southern Chinese Sign Language (Shanghai Sign Language). Survey needed. Few signs of foreign origin. Negative clauses reportedly share similarity with British Sign Language.

Language Use

Classmates and factory coworkers are channels of dissemination. Now specialized deaf colleges use CSL. All domains. All ages.

Language Development
In 2006, school age deaf children enrollment rate was approximately 82% (China Disabled Persons’ Federation). TV. Videos. Dictionary. Grammar.
Other Comments

Developed late 1980s. There are also Chinese character signs. Others use home sign languages. 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.

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