This paper intends to explore the correlation between language representation and ideologies and the legal recognition of sign languages, by taking into consideration the case of Italian Sign Language (LIS). Such correlation will be explored in the political debate that has characterized the pathways of the linguistic policies discussed after the recognition with the participant observation technique. Data have been collected by the author during the hearings after the Recognition that were livestreamed. Results show that the prejudices against a visual gestural language, dating back to the nineteenth century, have strongly influenced the Recognition of LIS that follows a different recognition pathway compared to minority languages. In Italy LIS has been framed as a tool for accessibility and its sociocultural dimension has been completely ignored with important consequences in terms of both education and inclusion. For this reason, language policy is conducted in an uncoordinated way without dealing with the main issues related to the recognition of a language that are status, corpus and acquisition planning. The case of LIS reveals how language policy and planning in minorities can be strongly shaped by ideologies and prejudices of the majorities urging that the sociolinguistic background of a language and a community is considered.

Il riconoscimento della LIS tra ideologie linguistiche e diritti umani

Sabina Fontana
Conceptualization
2022

Abstract

This paper intends to explore the correlation between language representation and ideologies and the legal recognition of sign languages, by taking into consideration the case of Italian Sign Language (LIS). Such correlation will be explored in the political debate that has characterized the pathways of the linguistic policies discussed after the recognition with the participant observation technique. Data have been collected by the author during the hearings after the Recognition that were livestreamed. Results show that the prejudices against a visual gestural language, dating back to the nineteenth century, have strongly influenced the Recognition of LIS that follows a different recognition pathway compared to minority languages. In Italy LIS has been framed as a tool for accessibility and its sociocultural dimension has been completely ignored with important consequences in terms of both education and inclusion. For this reason, language policy is conducted in an uncoordinated way without dealing with the main issues related to the recognition of a language that are status, corpus and acquisition planning. The case of LIS reveals how language policy and planning in minorities can be strongly shaped by ideologies and prejudices of the majorities urging that the sociolinguistic background of a language and a community is considered.
Italian sign language; ideologies; linguistic minorities; rights.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11769/537475
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