This website is for people who are interested in Australian Indigenous sign languages – in particular the sign languages used in Central Australia. The word iltyem-iltyem is used in Anmatyerr to mean ‘signalling with hands, using handsigns’. It comes from the word iltya, ‘hand, finger’. Because this sign language project began with Anmatyerr people from the community of Ti Tree, we have named the website, iltyem-iltyem. This word is equivalent to iltyeme-iltyeme in Eastern/Central Arrernte and rdaka-rdaka in Warlpiri. In Kaytetye eltye eltyarrenke means ‘use hand signs’.
In August 2017 our project started working with a team in Maningrida, recording sign languages used in the north-central Arnhem Land region. In Maningrida people often refer to their sign system as ‘actions’.
Trixie, Jenny, Dorothy and Janet, at the beach after a fun ‘action’ session.
Rdaka-rdaka Marlu-witalpa-nyinaja ‘Hand signs: the little kangaroo’
Coral Napangardi Gallagher signs a story about a
Cindy Jinmarabynana demonstrates Maningrida Sign Language in this film. This was made in May 2016, at a sign language workshop during the WANALA
Iltyem-iltyem: NT Language Support Program – Central Australia by Batchelor Institute of Indigenous Tertiary Education is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are warned that the content on this website may contain images and voices of people who have passed away.