Nonverbal communication can serve several functions
- Emblems - can be used to replace words, direct verbal translation (e.g., the "O.K." gesture).
- Illustrators - accompany and clarify spoken word (e.g., pointing when telling somebody directions).
- Affect displays - movement of face, etc. which show emotion (e.g. a smile).
- Regulators - movements which encourage or discourage further communication … “traffic cops” of conversation (e.g., a student raises their hand in classroom and prof. stops and allows them to speak).
- Adaptors - movements to satisfy physical or psychological discomfort (e.g., scratching an itch).
Which functions are more universal (i.e., be understand regardless of culture)? Which are more culturaly relative (i.e., would not be understood across cultures)?
Share this post with others. See the Twitter, Facebook and other buttons below.
Please follow, add, friend or subscribe to help support this blog.
See more about me at my web site WilliamHartPhD.com.