Hand gesture Gesture is the movement of hands and arms to covey message with speech or without speech. According to Wikipedia, free encyclopedia, “gesture is a form of nonverbal communication in which visible bodily actions communicate particular messages, either in place of speech or together and in parallel with spoken words.” Gesture processed in brain, such as Bronca’s and Wenickes areas, which are used by speech and sign language. Body language accounts for about 65-70% of human communication (website). Gesture should be synchronized with words to be credible, formed unintentional, and gesture is bond to cultures and different among cultures and nationalities.
Speech and gestures relation • When speech and gesture are produced together and reveal similar message, regarded as two aspect of single process. • Gesture is produced in conjunction with speech and shares the burden of communication with that speech, it is unsegmented, imagistic form, convey information not found in speech. • “gesture, due to its relation with language, is a powerful communication tool that can shed light on the mental organization of meaning” Bellugi and Brown(1964) and kendon (1982)
When hands and arm moved to produce dynamic visual representation of the objects and action they intended to communicate. The meaning conveyed by gesture can be easily recognized and labeled with words and vice versa. • Example, Using thumbs up and index finger and near to the ear meaning “call me”, Or “I will call you”
Formation of gestures • Everyday, people unintentionally convey signals by facial expression, gestures, and body postures. • Gestures should be natural and involuntary • unintentional communication is largely concerned with revealing the inner emotional state to others. • Reveal truth and more genuine
Examples • Involuntary movement of body part • Scratch head, hair • Touching nose • Fingers to mouth • Hand in face
Cultural difference • common gestures that can lead to problems with cross cultural communication. • Beckon with index finger- In Australia like sexual insult • Handshake with opposite sex -in middle east and north Africa countries is not allowed except close relatives • Pointing fingers-it is rude to point out someone in American and European cultures. In most Asian countries pointing with index finger is offensive.
Example • President W. Bush during his visit to Australia made a serious mistake of hand gesture. He gave peace signal by waving his hand instead of palm facing outwards, it faced inwards that is offensive in Australian culture.
Personal example, • In U.S. walking with friends or family as hand to hand contact is considered as sexual relationship. But this is considered as good relationship or friendly contact in some countries of east Africa . This is happen to myself more than three times. I like to walk with my friends holding hand to hand, but they told me different cultural meaning and make me shocked.
conclusion • Gestures are more powerful than words and also add power to words during speech. Gestures should match with words, natural, and depends on culture different from nation to nation in conveying messages. It is important to understand the meaning of gestures before using to communicate with people in different cultures..
references • Gregory, H. (2010) .Public speaking for College & Career. New york • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gesture • www.happehtheory.com/.../the-daily-insight-5-23-11-gesture-insults • Hirata, Y., & Kelly, S. D. (2010). Effects of Lips and Hands on Auditory Learning of Second-Language Speech Sounds. Journal of Speech, Language & Hearing Research, 53(2), 298-310. Retrieved from EBSCOhost. • Buggey, T. (2007, Summer). A Picture Is Worth .... Journal of Positive Behavior Interventions, 9(3), 151-158. Retrieved December 14, 2007, from Academic Search Premier database • http://www.buzzle.com/articles/hand-gestures-in-different-cultures.html • http://youtu.be/xHSe1ogHYUw