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  Evolutionary dynamics in the dispersal of sign languages

Power, J. M., Grimm, G. W., & List, J.-M. (2020). Evolutionary dynamics in the dispersal of sign languages. Royal Society Open Science, 7(1): 191100, pp. 1-15. doi:10.1098/rsos.191100.

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Item Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0003-E3B8-D Version Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0006-BEAC-3
Genre: Journal Article

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 Creators:
Power, Justin M., Author
Grimm, Guido W., Author
List, Johann-Mattis1, Author              
Affiliations:
1Linguistic and Cultural Evolution, Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, Max Planck Society, ou_2074311              

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Free keywords: language evolution, language phylogeny, phylogenetic networks, sign language
 Abstract: The evolution of spoken languages has been studied since the mid-nineteenth century using traditional historical comparative methods and, more recently, computational phylogenetic methods. By contrast, evolutionary processes resulting in the diversity of contemporary sign languages (SLs) have received much less attention, and scholars have been largely unsuccessful in grouping SLs into monophyletic language families using traditional methods. To date, no published studies have attempted to use language data to infer relationships among SLs on a large scale. Here, we report the results of a phylogenetic analysis of 40 contemporary and 36 historical SL manual alphabets coded for morphological similarity. Our results support grouping SLs in the sample into six main European lineages, with three larger groups of Austrian, British and French origin, as well as three smaller groups centring around Russian, Spanish and Swedish. The British and Swedish lineages support current knowledge of relationships among SLs based on extra-linguistic historical sources. With respect to other lineages, our results diverge from current hypotheses by indicating (i) independent evolution of Austrian, French and Spanish from Spanish sources; (ii) an internal Danish subgroup within the Austrian lineage; and (iii) evolution of Russian from Austrian sources.

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Language(s): eng - English
 Dates: 2020-01-22
 Publication Status: Published online
 Pages: 15
 Publishing info: -
 Table of Contents: -
 Rev. Type: Peer
 Identifiers: DOI: 10.1098/rsos.191100
DOI: 10.17613/0smt-j414
Other: shh2272
 Degree: -

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Title: Royal Society Open Science
Source Genre: Journal
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Publ. Info: London : Royal Society
Pages: - Volume / Issue: 7 (1) Sequence Number: 191100 Start / End Page: 1 - 15 Identifier: ISSN: 2054-5703
CoNE: https://pure.mpg.de/cone/journals/resource/2054-5703

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Title: Humanities Commons
Source Genre: Journal
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Publ. Info: New York : Modern Language Association
Pages: - Volume / Issue: - Sequence Number: 24953 Start / End Page: - Identifier: URN: https://hcommons.org/