• Entry
  • Reader's guide
  • Entries A-Z
  • Subject index

Sign Language, Hawaiian

  • By: Samantha Rarrick & Linda Lambrecht
  • In: The SAGE Deaf Studies Encyclopedia
  • Edited by: Genie Gertz & Patrick Boudreault
  • Subject:Physical Disabilities, Otorhinolaryngology (Ears, Nose, & Throat)

Hawaii Sign Language (HSL) is a language used by approximately 40 individuals in the Hawaiian Islands. All of the known users are older and primarily use American Sign Language (ASL), making HSL a critically endangered language. HSL is neither a dialect of ASL nor a signed version of Hawaiian Creole English, “Pidgin.” It is in fact so distinct from ASL that it is most likely a completely unrelated language. Although other names have been suggested for HSL, the demographic of its users and its distinctness from other languages led to the choice of Hawaii Sign Language to refer to this sign language. HSL is likely to be the last language discovered in the United States, and because of its status as an endangered language, ...

    • Loading...
    locked icon

    Sign in to access this content

    Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

    • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
    • Read modern, diverse business cases
    • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles