ASL has all the components and constrains (e.g., grammar and syntax) of spoken and heard language. If ASL is learned beyond a time-limited sensitive period for integration of the right hemisphere into the language system, the normal left-hemisphere specialization for language will prevail. (Hearing people who learned ASL, in order to teach deaf children for example, do not show any activation of the right hemisphere when reading or signing.) (Restak, Richard, MD. The Secret Life of the Brain. p 51. Washington D.C.: The Dana Press and Joseph Henry Press, 2001.)

Similar to spoken language in terms of brain processing. Sign language uses movement and vision (rather than sound) to activate the speech centers of the left hemisphere. (Brynie, Faith Hickman. 101 Questions Your Brain Has Asked About Itself But Couldn’t Answer, Until Now. p 131. CT: Millbrook Press, 1998.)

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