Beginner II

Rhetorical questions in American Sign Language

A rhetorical question is more of a statement. It is not a true question; it is a way of pulling a listener's attention by asking a question and then answering. The signer does not expect the listener to reply.

The attention-catching rhetorical statements are usually accompanied with the raised brows and slightly tilted head.

The rhetorical question words often occur in the middle of the sentences. The common rhetorical question signs are: why, reason, how, what, and where.

Example: last-year, ix-me finally got-into ix-there school /\how/\ my mother poss former classmate work there.

Related posts

Also see: question signals for yes/no question and wh-q question.

New to sign language? "Where do I start?" or "How do I start learning sign language?" This ASL Rookie guide lists some selected links to the tutorials for ASL beginners to get started and keep rolling. It may be a useful review for intermediate-level learners and ASL students as well.

Some tutorial pages are a mix of free and premium versions. Access to premium content and links below are available in the PatronPlus subscription. More links/posts will be added from time to time.

Expressing needs and wants

  1. Making commands or requests

Talking about activities

  1. Frequency of time: how often?

Are you able to carry everyday conversations in ASL? Are you a student in the intermediate levels and beyond, who wishes to boost up your signing skills? You've come to the selected tutorial series. (Some premium content are available to PatronPlus membership.)

Stories, poems, performance arts, etc. in sign language.

This documentation project follows a child's language acquisition, literacy development, and phonological acquisition in sign language, specifically ASL, from newborn to age five in a natural native-ASL environment and visual culture.