Sinasina Sign Language

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Rarrick, Samantha
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Chimbu Province, Papua New Guinea

Research Background This is a continually growing archived data collection, containing digital recordings and analysis for Sinasina Sign Language (SSSL). SSSL is an endangered sign language of Chimbu, Papua New Guinea (PNG), where these recordings were collected. SSSL was first reported in 2016. This collection contains the first and likely only recordings of this language. Presently, approximately 5 other sign languages have been identified in PNG. No other sign language has been reported in Chimbu. These recordings target naturalistic story-telling and elicited SSSL use, capturing both signers' knowledge and grammatical structures. Video recordings, analysis, transcription and translations will continue to be added. Research Contribution While there are approximately 800 spoken languages in PNG, SSSL is one of 5 sign languages have been reported in the country. The earliest videos in this collection were collected in 2016, shortly after SSSL was first reported. At that time, it was the third sign language identified in PNG. Because linguists' understanding of sign languages in this region is still limited, these data have potential to drastically further our understanding of the typological features of sign languages. Currently, unusual places of articulation have been identified in these signs, which is under further investigation. The recordings and analysis which make up this collection are likely the only recordings of SSSL, which is currently at risk of being lost. This collection thus serves as starting points for preserving SSSL and research with similar languages, lending further insight into the features of languages globally. Research Significance Because it is unique, this collection can serve linguists and a wider audience. Anthropologists, sociologists, and members of the community where SSSL is used may also benefit from access to this collection. This collection preserves knowledge, traditions and cultural practices in this community in perpetuity.

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Language documentation and description
Corpus linguistics
Pacific Peoples linguistics and languages
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Rarrick, S, Sinasina Sign Language, Kaipuleohone, 2017