In gesture studies character viewpoint and observer viewpoint (McNeill 1992) characterize
co-speech gestures depending on whether the gesturer’s hand and body imitate a referent’s hand and
body or the hand represents a referent in its entirety. In sign languages, handling handshapes and entity
handshapes are used in depicting predicates. Narratives in Danish Sign Language (DTS) elicited to make
signers describe an event from either the agent’s or the patient’s perspective demonstrate that discourse
perspective is expressed by which referent, the agent or the patient, the signers represent at their own
locus. This is reflected in the orientation and movement direction of the manual articulator, not by the type
of representation in the articulator. Signers may also imitate the gaze direction of the referent represented
at their locus or have eye contact with the addressees. When they represent a referent by their own locus
and simultaneously have eye contact with the addressee, the construction mixes referent perspective and
narrator perspective. This description accords with an understanding of linguistic perspective as grounded
in bodily perspective within a physical scene (Sweetser 2012) and relates the deictic and attitudinal means
for expressing perspective in sign languages to the way perspective is expressed in spoken languages.
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