18.2 Proform continued

English Notes
BSL Video

Proforms continued

There are many proforms in BSL but we are going to focus on three basic groups of proforms used frequently in BSL (and a fourth handshape which is slightly different):

1) A single finger (‘G’): The ‘G’ hand is used when an object is represented as having one dimension (length or height) and this stands for referents which are considered to be long and thin: PERSON, PENCIL, TOOTHBRUSH, TUBE-TRAIN, etc.

2) A flat hand (‘B’): this stands for referents represented as having two dimensions (ie flat), such as BED/S, PLATE and TABLE. CAR can also be represented by the ‘B’ hand in two different ways, either vertically or horizontally, in describing for example rows of parked cars. PICTURE can be shown by using one or two ‘B’ hands as illustrated. Further examples include: WALL, VEHICLE (this could be any vehicle, such as a lorry or tractor etc), FAX, PAPER, BICYCLES etc.

3) A curved “clawed” hand (‘5’): this stands for referents represented as having three dimensions, whether square or round, for example a house or any building, a rock, a cake, etc. A slightly different handshape is used, with the palm facing sideways, for MUG or CUP etc.


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