Ethiopian Sign Language

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A language of Ethiopia

Alternate Names
EthSL
Population

250,000 (2008 WFD). WFD figure represents Deaf sign language users. 1,000,000 (2005 Ethiopian National Association of the Deaf). Unknown number of isolated deaf in rural areas.

Location

Scattered.

Language Status

5 (Developing).

Dialects

None known. Hosanna School for the Deaf uses more indigenous signs than Addis Ababa, which has more influence from Amharic [amh]. Influence from Amharic [amh] in grammar and lexicon. Possible lexical influence from European sign languages, due to presence of foreign advisors.

Typology

One-handed fingerspelling (Amharic script).

Language Use

Some primary and secondary schools, university (B.A. level). Used in mass media. Used by all.

Language Development

TV. Bible portions: 2011–2014. Agency: Ethiopian National Association of the Deaf (ENAD).

Writing

Unwritten documents [Zxxx].

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