The History of British Sign Language

DCAL, along with the British Deaf History society and UCL’s Action on Hearing Loss Library, is hosting an new exhibition on the history of BSL.

The exhibition contains rare books, pamphlets and the early films that chronicle the origins and history of sign language in Britain. The displays have something to amaze anyone whatever their existing knowledge about sign language of Deaf culture. Open to everyone it will appeal to the expert and someone with a passing interest in history or language development.

Find out about

  • The earliest sources of British sign language
  • The history of finger spelling and the beginnings of deaf education
  • How BSL and Deaf culture changes and continues to change in the 21 century
  • Which sign languages are related to BSL
  • The influences of religion, education and royal patronage on BSL