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Paralanguage: Nonverbal Communication

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Presentation on theme: "Paralanguage: Nonverbal Communication"— Presentation transcript:

1 Paralanguage: Nonverbal Communication
“People are more frightened of being lonely than of being hungry, or being deprived of sleep, or of having their sexual needs unfulfilled” (Frieda Fromm Reichmenn).

2 Paralanguage: Nonverbal Communication
Communication by means other than language.

3 Paralanguage includes
Facial expressions Tones of voice Gestures Eye contact Spatial arrangements Patterns of touch Expressive movements Silence

4 Paralanguage includes intentional and unintentional nonverbal messages

5 Paralanguage may be: Complementary Unconscious Learned

6 Universals and Cultural Variations
eyebrow flash, the nose wrinkle basic emotions: --happiness, sadness, disgust, fear, anger, and surprise

7 The functions of nonverbal communication
To repeat what was said verbally To complement what was said verbally To contradict to what was said verbally To substitute for what would be said verbally To regulate and manage the communication event

8 Nonverbal communication divided into
Kinesic and Proxemic acts Kinesics: The study of nonverbal gestures, facial expressions, eye contact, and body posture Proxemics: The study of the use of space, touch, and distance as features of nonverbal communication.

9 Inborn Nonverbal Actions
Smiling Crying

10 Universality versus Relativism
Birdwhistell (1970) Emblems: are gestures understood by participant of a communicative community to express a specific meaning

11 Cultural Specific Emblems
Can you guess what the following gestures from Japan, France and Iran mean?

12 Could reflect social status and gender
Dominance versus subordination In North America ---more space---take less space ---stare at others ---less eye contact --- smile more-- smile less

13 Dangers of overgeneralizations
Cannot assume everybody in a culture behaves the same way Infrequent actions should not be used to characterize a culture We should not ignore that nonverbal behaviors are part of complex communication processes

14 How do we communicate with those we don’t know?
Leonard Zunin (The First Four Minutes, 1972) Three common behaviours: which side of the path” look I acknowledge you” look Look—away priority”

15 Proxemics Edward, T Hall in 1963
refers to touch and issues of personal space


17 Distance Between Faces. Tone of Voice
Distance Between Faces Tone of Voice Type of Message very close (3-6") soft whisper top secret or sensual close (8-12") audible whisper very confidential neutral (20-36") soft voice, low volume personal subject matter neutral (4.5-5') full voice non-personal information across the room (8-20') loud voice talking to a group stretching the limit





22 All nonverbal communication is best understood within cultural context
Body movements Eye contact Facial expressions Touch

23 Silence also part of nonverbal communication
Sends nonverbal clues during communication Culturally determined Igbos of Nigeria

24 Do you think that understanding nonverbal patterns can help us identify our own ethnocentric attitudes?

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