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Signed Soliloquy: Visible Private Speech
post Thu Mar 14, 2013, 12:12 PM
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Talking to oneself can be silent (inner speech) or vocalized for others to hear (private speech, or soliloquy). We investigated these two types of self-communication in 28 deaf signers and 28 hearing adults. With a questionnaire specifically developed for this study, we established the visible analog of vocalized private speech in deaf signers. "Signed soliloquy" is employed regularly and valued as an integral part of everyday functioning. Deaf signers were also found to engage in inner speech, which appeared to have a mostly affirmative character. Together, the findings demonstrate a significantly more frequent use of both inner and private speech in the deaf sample. They underscore the benefits of self-talk in general and provide the first-ever description of an intriguing phenomenon in deaf signers’ self-communication, that is, signed soliloquy.

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