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Knoxville, Tennessee
Documenting Plains Indian Sign Language

Before English, Plains Indian Sign Language (PISL) was the lingua franca among diverse Plains Native American groups, as well as a vital means of communication for deaf and hard of hearing Native Americans. PISL is now endangered, though revitalization efforts are underway in tribal communities across the country. Two fellowships from the NEH’s Documenting Endangered Languages program have allowed linguist Jeffrey Davis to help further these efforts by creating a PISL digital archive.

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