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Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.

No ads, no paywall, no clickbait – just thought-provoking ideas from the world’s leading thinkers, free to all. But we can’t do it without you.

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A few things to know about American Sign Language

4 minutes

From accents to ‘sleep signing’ – the psychology and the politics of sign language

Like all languages, American Sign Language (ASL) is hardly a static or self-contained – it comes with its own regional and cultural dialects, politics and bendable rules. Filmed at Gallaudet University, a school for the deaf and hard of hearing located in Washington, DC, this video from NPR features several ASL speakers addressing important features of, and common misconceptions about, their language and heterogeneous community.

Video by NPR

Producer: Beck Harlan

Support Aeon

Ideas can change the world

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview.

But we can’t do it without you.

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.

No ads, no paywall, no clickbait – just thought-provoking ideas from the world’s leading thinkers, free to all. But we can’t do it without you.

Become a Friend for $5 a month or Make a one-off donation

Essay/Anthropology
Infanticide

There is nothing so horrific as child murder, yet it’s ubiquitous in human history. What drives a parent to kill a baby?

Sandra Newman

Essay/Rituals & Celebrations
Who first buried the dead?

Evidence of burial rites by the primitive, small-brained Homo naledi suggests that symbolic behaviour is very ancient indeed

Paige Madison