Well I’m proud to be an AmericAN
Where at least I know I’m freeeee
Now that I’m outside the States it hits home to me how pervasive America’s main export is: Television and movies. Second and only slightly less important is internet content, and 3rd, well, I guess America sortof built on the British legacy as it exports business practices and with that English as the language of business. But that’s just buildup.
Imagine my excitement when an iPhone commercial comes on, geared to the deaf, and the two iPhone 4 FaceTime users are video chatting not in AusLan, but in ASL!! I thought I saw a bunch more signing and spelling than what you see in the youtube video I linked, but it is in there – a little more than halfway through.
Now we already know that Australian TV programming is spotty at best, and their QC isn’t spectacular, but I still couldn’t help a little swell of pride to see words spelled on one hand.
Let the exporting of ASL begin!
Fun fact: Did you know that Marlee Matlin, deaf and blunt person that she is, once commented on AusLan, saying it seemed to her like ‘baby talk’. Australia has never forgiven her, but from what I’ve seen I can understand where she’s coming from. The real thrill of ASL is its syntax, surrogacy, and conjugacy, only some of which have I ever seen in AusLan, as there’s a strong pidgin/signed English influence which sterilises the visual form.
So when in the same way English is heavily taught throughout the world, ASL has caught on as the sign language of choice, I’ll open shop as expert tutor extraordinaire!