Body language in cultures

Common Cross-Cultural Differences When you are dealing with people from different cultures, you should both understand that perceived insults are often entirely unintentional. So, while there are some general behaviors to be aware of, not every breach of etiquette will cause deep offense. Here are some examples of body language to be aware of: Use of Hands or Fingers.

Body language in cultures

Oculesics Oculesics, a subcategory of body language, is the study of eye movement, eye behavior, gaze, and eye-related nonverbal communication.

As a social or behavioral science, oculesics is a form of nonverbal communication focusing on deriving meaning from eye behavior.

Body Language - Cultural Variations In Gestures

For example, in traditional Anglo-Saxon culture, avoiding eye contact usually portrays a lack of confidence, certainty, or truthfulness. Haptic communication Haptics, a subcategory of Body Language, is the study of touching and how it is used in communication.

Touching can be used to sooth, for amusement Body language in cultures play, to flirt, to express power and maintain bonds between people, such as with baby and mother.

Touching can carry distinct emotions and also show the intensity of those emotions. Touch absent of other cues can signal anger, fear, disgust, love, gratitude and sympathy depending on the length and type of touching that is performed.

Many factors also contribute to the meaning of touching such as the length of the touch and location on the body in which the touching takes place. Research has also shown that people can accurately decode distinct emotions by merely watching others communicate via touch.

When studying foreign speech, don’t forget about body language, says Anne Merritt.

Touching stresses how special the message is that is being sent by the initiator. For example, Jones and Yarbrough explained that strategic touching is a series of touching usually with an ulterior or hidden motive thus making them seem to be using touch as a game to get someone to do something for them.

The amount of touching that occurs within a culture is also culturally dependent. Proxemics Diagram of Edward T. Introduced by Edward T. Hall inproxemics is the study of measurable distances between people as they interact with one another.


Hall also came up with four distinct zones in which most men operate: For example, when people talk they like to face each other. If forced to sit side by side, their body language will try to compensate for this lack of eye-to-eye contact by leaning in shoulder-to-shoulder.

Hall suggested that "physical contact between two people They often greet one another by kissing on the cheeks. North Americanson the other hand, prefer to shake hands.

Body language in cultures

While they have made some physical contact with the shaking of the hand, they still maintain a certain amount of physical space between the other person.

The manner in which something is said can affect how it should be interpreted. Shouting, smiling, irony and so on may add a layer of meaning which is neither pure body language nor speech. Broadly, the theories can be categorized into two models: Where Darwin notes similarity in expression among animals and humans, the Cultural Equivalence Model notes similarity in expression across cultures in humans, even though they may be completely different.

One of the strongest pieces of evidence that supports this model was a study conducted by Ekman and Friesenwhere members of a preliterate tribe in Papua New Guinea reliably recognized the facial expressions of individuals from the United States.We use body language, the way people demonstrate their emotions through body movements such as facial expressions, eye contact, and hand gestures, constantly.

However, not all gestures are.

International body language: a language with no words - Telegraph

In this article, we'll discuss why it's important to be aware of the different meanings body language has in different countries and cultures. And we look at some of the faux pas you should avoid when working around the world. Most foreign cultures do not expect you to learn their language but are extremely impressed by the traveller who has taken the time to learn and use local body language customs.

This tells them that you respect their culture. Understand cultural differences in body language. Common hand gestures used in the United States carry very different meanings in other cultures. Read this article before using the OK signal, thumbs-up, or even extending a hand shake in other countries.

Cultural body language differences are an important aspect of non-verbal communication.

Body language in cultures

What can be seen in one culture as a compliment is often taken as an insult in another culture. In this article we are going to look at a brief sampling of .

Different countries and their respective cultures employ different types of body language. This lesson will discuss a variety of body language used in different cultures.

Body Language - Cultural Variations In Gestures