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

Sign Language: Japan

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

Japanese Sign Language (JSL), Nihon Shuwa in Japanese, is the language used by Japanese Deaf people and is the distinctive and full-fledged signed language of Japan. JSL also has its own fingerspelling system. In Japanese written language, there are four kinds of writing systems: Kanji (Chinese Characters); Hiragana; Katakana; and Roman alphabets. These systems are all used in combination.

The Chinese characters convey the substantive event and Hiragana is used mainly to show grammatical statuses when used at the same time in one sentence. JSL’s system resembles the writing system in this way. JSL manual signs show the substantive event and nonmanual markers show the grammatical statuses of the signs.

Some distinct features of JSL are different from ASL and the other European sign languages. This ...

    • 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