J in sign language
There are different sign language alphabets around the world, so are the alphabetical/symbolic letters or characters of spoken languages throughout the world.
In signed languages, different manual alphabets in different countries or languages are used to fingerspell a spoken or written word of a spoken language where there is no sign or to transliterate a spoken/written word, such as personal names, names of places, brand names, foreign spoken words, etc.
J letter in ASL alphabet
How do you say letter J in American Sign Language (ASL)? The handshape for the letter "J" is the same as the letter "I", except for the movement.
Definition: The tenth letter of the English alphabet and American manual alphabet, a consonant.
Pronunciation (sign description): With the dominant fist hand (in this case, right-handed), the pinkie is upright and the palm faces outward/left (no frozen rule). The upright pinky finger moves downward and then left in a curvy motion. Imagine the shape of "J of the motion.
In co-articulation which means how one unit (sound in spoken language or prime in sign language) of a language affects the previous and next letter or structure of a word/sign, the letter J in fingerspelling can be a strong effect on the units around it.
For example, in the fingerspelled name "John", the first letter J influences the orientation of the letter O which shows a different orientation in the frozen manual alphabet chart. That's different in real life fingerspelling.
When fingerspelling a double J, how to do fingerspell a word with the double letters? It's very rare as there is barely a word with the double J in English. Suppose there is, just for an example. For the word "hajj", repeat the letter J -- H-A-J-J. No sideways.
For beginners, don't bounce each letter when fingerspelling.
Baby signing J
The handshape I/J is one of a large number of marked handshapes, which means that unlike marked handshapes, unmarked handshapes are natural in sign language.
In language development (phonological acquisition in particular), the handshape I/J in ASL-speaking toddlers doesn't emerge in ASL words with the handshape I until later, somewhere in the late phase of the whole handshape chart which contains over 50+ handshapes found in ASL, just like there are about 40-44 phonemes in English spoken language (vs 26 alphabetical letters in written English).
In the case study of baby Juli in my documentation, the I handshape emerged at age 2;9 without the support of handshape T. Prior to the full-formed "I", she used the handshape T to help form I; that is a combination of T and I. At that time, she was able to form "I" as in the ASL word "drawing". In the ASL word "JUICE", she used the handshape error of "1" (forefinger) for signing JUICE until later than age 2;1. At age 2;1, the correct movement emerged but the handshape error remained until possibly age 2;9 when the "I" handshape emerged.
By age 3.5 to 4 or so, ASL-speaking children may be able to form each handshape of the whole alphabet. Children develop at different pace with different strategies. But, in general, milestones are consistent.
Other manual alphabets
The two-handed British manual alphabet is used in British Sign Language (BSL) by Deaf people in the U.K., Australian Sign Language (Auslan) in Australia, and New Zealand (NZSL) in New Zealand.
As Old ASL in North America was descended from Old French Sign Language (Old LSF) in France, both modern ASL and LSF share the similar manual alphabet; though, these sign languages are very different today.
[Note: ASL writing is not an official standard. This sign language writing remains in a state of open space to allow room for experiment, evolution, and improvement.]
Written ASL digit for the alphabetical letter J. [Contributed by ASLwrite, 2019]