The National Museum of Ethnology (Minpaku) is a research center for ethnology and cultural anthropology.

Seminars, Symposia, and Academic Conferences

Sunday, September 20 ~Sunday, September 21, 2015
Signed and Spoken Language Linguistics Festa (SSLL4)

This symposium is held for sharing the research results of studies that compare signed and spoken languages, thus offering opportunities for researchers and also signers in Japan to listen to the latest findings in the field of linguistics. This year’s event is organized as follows.

September 20, 2015 "Sign Language Linguistics Today"
1) Reports about related programs in Asian countries initiated by the Chinese University of Hong Kong and presentations by students of that University who are supported by the Nippon Foundation.
2) Research reports following up topics from last year's symposium.

September 21, 2015 "What Grammar Requires, What It Permits, How You Get Around It When It Doesn't."
Three sessions in which groups of researchers specializing in signed and/or spoken language(s) will deliver 45 minutes presentations, followed up by short public discussions on the topics of their choice.

  • Date: Sunday, September 20 - Monday, September 21, 2015
  • Venue: National Museum of Ethnology Auditorium (300 seats)
  • Open to the general public (free admission, registration required)
    Click here to register
  • Language: English, American Sign Languages, Japanese, Japanese Sign Languages, Hong Kong Sign Language (with English/Japanese, JSL/Japanese*, English/ASL, English/HKSL Interpretation)
    * JSL-Japanese interpreters will include instructors and trainees of the Minpaku Training Program for Academic Sign Language Interpreters.
  • Hosted by: National Institutes for the Humanities, National Museum of Ethnology
  • Supported by: Legato Corporation, Japanese Association for Sign Language Studies, Japanese Institute for Sign Languages, Japanese Federation of the Deaf, The Linguistic Society of Japan
  • Sponsored by: The Nippon Foundation

With Live Streaming on Ustream! For Live Streaming click here

A staff member will be at the main gate of the Natural and Cultural Park (near Banpaku-Kinen-Koen Station) from 9:00 in the morning.
To enter, please present the proof of registration that will be sent to you when you register.



Saturday, September 19

Meetings of presenters and interpreters

Sunday, September 20
  • Symposia: 10:00 - 17:05
  • Reception: 17:30 - 19:30 (Fee: 4,000yen, participants from overseas and interpreters are invited.)
  • Venue: National Museum of Ethnology Auditorium
Time Contents
9:30 - 10:00 Registration
10:00 - 10:05 Welcome
SUDO Keni'chi (Minpaku) [English]
10:05 - 10:10 Greetings
OGATA Takejhu (Nippon Foundation), TAKAHASHI Eriko (Nippon Foundation) [Japanese]
10:10 - 10:15 Business Announcements
KIKUSAWA Ritsuko (Minpaku/Sokendai) [English]
Session 1: Introducing projects of the Chinese University of Hong Kong
10:15 - 10:30 Sign Linguistics Training in the Asia Pacific Region
James WOODWARD, Gladys TANG, Felix SZE, Jafi LEE [English]
10:30 - 10:45 Recent Development in Sign Linguistics in Sri Lanka
Kodithuwakku Koralege Brayan SUSANTHA [HKSL]
10:45 - 11:00 The Sign Language Research Laboratory (LRBI) at Universitas Indonesia
Adhi Kusumo BHAROTO, Laura Lesmana WIJAYA [HKSL]
11:00 - 11:15 Questions and Comments
Chair: OHSUGI Yutaka (Tsukuba Univ. of Technology/Minpaku) [ASL]
11:15 - 11:30 Break
11:30 - 11:45 Topicalization in Japanese Sign Language
11:45 - 12:00 Constraints on Numeral Incorporation in Japanese Sign Language
IKEDA Masumi [JSL]
12:00 - 12:15 'CAN' in Hong Kong Sign Language
Aaron WONG Yiu Leung [HKSL]
12:15 - 12:30 Questions and Comments
Chair: ICHIDA Yasuhiro (NRCD/Minpaku)
12:30 - 13:30 Lunch Break
13:30 - 13:45 Negative Palm-up Sign in HKSL: Linguistic or Gesture?
Brenda YU Wai Lam [HKSL]
13:45 - 14:00 Relative Clauses in Japanese Sign Language
ENDO Eita [English]
14:00 - 14:15 Head Nod as a Prosodic Cue in Japanese Sign Language and Its Use by Non-Native JSL Interpreters
SHIMOTANI Natsuko [English]
14:15 - 14:30 Questions and Comments
Susan FISCHER (CUNY) [English]
14:30 - 15:00 Break
15:00 - 15:45 Features and Their Physical Exponents in Signed and Spoken Languages
NASUKAWA Kuniya (Tohoku Univ.) [English]
15:45 - 16:30 Towards Historical Sign Linguistics: The First Step
KIKUSAWA Ritsuko (Minpaku/Sokendai) [English], SAGARA Keiko (Minpaku) [JSL]
16:30 - 17:00 Questions and Comments
Chair: HARA Daisuke (Toyota Univ. of Technology) [English]
17:00 - 17:05 Business Announcements
SAGARA Keiko (Minpaku) [JSL]
17:30 - 19:30 Reception
Monday, September 21
  • Time: 10:00 - 17:05
  • Venue: National Museum of Ethnology Auditorium
Time Contents
9:25 - 9:55 Registration
9:55 - 10:00 Business Announcements
SAGARA Keiko (Minpaku) [JSL]
10:00 - 10:45 What Grammar Requires, What It Permits, How You Get Around It When It Doesn't: An Introductory Lecture
Susan FISCHER (CUNY/Minpaku), KIKUSAWA Ritsuko (Minpaku/Sokendai)
10:45 - 11:00 Discussion
Chair: MORI Soya (JETRO-IDE) [ASL]
11:00 - 11:45 Negation, Word Order, and Interpretation
Sandra WOOD (McDaniel College) [ASL]
11:45 - 12:00 Discussion
Chair: MORI Soya (JETRO-IDE) [ASL]
12:00 - 13:00 Lunch Break
13:00 - 13:45 Space and Meaning: A Preliminary Study of Overt Pronouns in Japanese Sign Language
MATSUOKA Kazumi (Keio Univ.), MAEGAWA Kazumi (Kwansei Gakuin Univ.) [English and JSL]
13:45 - 14:30 Reference by Common Nouns and Pronouns: Where Grammar and Cognition Merge
WATANABE Manabu (Ahlstrom and Associates inc.) [English]
14:30 - 14:50 Discussion
Chair: NISHIMITSU Yoshihiro (Kobe Univ.) [English]
14:50 - 15:10 Break
15:10 - 15:55 The Path not Taken: Modality Effects and Grammatical Affordance in the Expression of Source, Goal and Path
Irit MEIR (University of Haifa) [English]
15:55 - 16:40 Ideophones and the Iconicity of Motion Event Descriptions
AKITA Kimi (Nagoya Univ.) [English]
16:40 - 17:00 Discussion
Chair: MATSUMOTO Yo (Kobe Univ.) [English]
17:00 - 17:05 Closing Remarks
KIKUSAWA Ritsuko (Minpaku/Sokendai) [English]
Tuesday, September 22

Interpreters' meeting (open to official symposium interpreters only)


For registration

Please send the following information either by e-mail or regular mail: Your name, address, phone or fax number, e-mail address, Deaf or hearing, sign language requirement (if you are a signer), the date(s) you are interested in participating. The reception for presenters on September 20 will be open to the general public (for the fee of 4,000 yen). If you are interested, please so indicate when you register.
Please note that the registration for attending reception closes on September 11.
○ By e-mail
Please write "International Symposium registration" in the subject line.
Our e-mail address is: SSLL1★ (Replace ★ with @.)
○ By regular mail
Please send the following information with a return envelop with stamps to: Office of Prof. Kikusawa, National Museum of Ethnology, 10-1 Senri Expopark, Suita-shi, Osaka, 565-8511.