Nonverbal communication in different cultures | Статья в журнале «Молодой ученый»

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Рубрика: Спецвыпуск

Опубликовано в Молодой учёный №4 (242) январь 2019 г.

Дата публикации: 31.01.2019

Статья просмотрена: 456 раз

Библиографическое описание:

Сыдыкова, А. К. Nonverbal communication in different cultures / А. К. Сыдыкова, А. Е. Туребаева. — Текст : непосредственный // Молодой ученый. — 2019. — № 4.1 (242.1). — С. 20-21. — URL: (дата обращения: 23.01.2022).

Mаn nееds tо cоmmunіcаtе wіth оthеrs in his dаily lіfe. Daіly actіvities shоw thаt mаny аctivitіes cаnnоt be pеrformеd with оut communіcating wіth othеrs. Many rеsearchers аnd expеrts hаve definеd cоmmunіcation. For exаmple, Arіstotle definеd communicatiоn as the usе of available sоurces to fіnd a wаy to encоurage othеrs to exprеss their idеas and opiniоns. The аim of communication is to develop motivation in the addressee.

Communication mеans sоcial develоpment and the source of culturе and spirіtual develоpment sо the lack of cоmmunication leаds to a relаtive stаtic stаte in humаn lifе which prеvents any kіnd of social develоpment.

Schоlars of the fiеld of education shоuld firstly аcquire the infоrmation and skіlls which are rеquired to communicate well with students. Variоus methods of cоmmunication suggеst thе skіlls as thоse of the relatiоnship betwеen vоluntary and invоluntary, fоrmal and infоrmal, one-sided and two-way, vеrbal and non-vеrbal cоmmunication.

The simple act of communication between people carried out not only a verbal way but also through an emotional and practical way, that is by means of gestures, mimicry, intonation and many other elements of nonverbal communication.

Communication is a difficult process of interaction between people, information consisting in exchange and also in perception and understanding by each other. Subjects of communication are living beings, people. In general, communication is typical to any living beings, but only at the level of the person process communication becomes conscious, connected by verbal and nonverbal acts. The person transferring information is called a communicator, receiving it – the recipient. It is possible to single out a number of aspects in communication: contents, purpose and means.

Nonverbalcommunication is better known as language of poses and gestures, includes all forms of self-expression of the person which don't lean on words. Psychologists consider that nonverbal signals are the most important condition of effective communication. Why nonverbal signals are so important in communication?

People perceive about 70% of information on visual channel.

Nonverbal signals allow to understand true feelings and thoughts of the interlocutor; our attitude towards the interlocutor isn't seldom formed under the influence of the first impression, and in turn it is the result of influence of nonverbal factors – look, views, manners, style of clothes, etc.

Nonverbal communication is different from person to person and especially from one culture to another. Cultural background defines their non-verbal communication as many forms of non-verbal communications like signs and signals are learned behavior.

As there are differences in meanings of non-verbal communication, miscommunication can occur when inter-cultural people communicate. People can offend others without meaning due to their cultural differences in nonverbal communication. Facial expressions are mostly similar in most cultures as many of them like smile and cry are innate.

For instance, you are European, you are traveling to Japan and you don’t speak Japanese. You don’t have a translator or a dictionary and you can only use non-verbal communication to communicate with people.

Nods might also mean different things causing problems like when the person nods to say “yes”, other people might understand it as “no”. In Japan, when you nod, they can just take it as a signal that you are listening to them.

Some of the nonverbal communication differences in different cultural are: Western cultures mostly consider eye contact to be a good gesture. It shows attentiveness, confidence and honesty. Other cultures such as Asian, Middle Eastern do not take it as a good expression. It is taken as a rude and offensive expression.

Unlike in Western cultures taking it as respectful, other do not consider it that way. In Eastern cultures women should especially not have eye contact with men as it shows power or interest. In some cultures, whereas, gazes are taken as a way of expression. Staring is taken as rude in most cultures. Gestures such as thumbs up can be interpreted differently in different cultures. It is taken as “Okay” sign in many cultures whereas is taken as a vulgarism in others like Latin American cultures and in Japan some even take it as money. Some cultures take snapping fingers to get the attention of a waiter as alright whereas some take it as disrespect and very offensive. Showing feet is taken as offensive in some Middle Eastern cultures. Some cultures take pointing fingers as insulting too. In Polynesia, people stick out their tongue to greet people which is taken as a sign of mockery in most of other cultures. Touches are taken as rudeness in most cultures. Shaking hands is considered to be acceptable in many. Similarly, acceptability of kissing, hugs, and many other touches are different in different cultures. People in Asia are more conservative in these types of non-verbal communication. Patting head or shoulder also has different meanings in different cultures. In some Asian cultures patting children’s head is very bad signal as head is taken to be sacred. Middle Eastern countries take touch between people from opposite genders is taken as bad character.

Where and how you are touched or touch changes the meaning of touch. So, you must be careful when you visit a new place.

The British, being notoriously undemonstrative, keep emotions hidden from public view so as not to make anyone uncomfortable. First, in British culture the language of gestures is not frequently used and only the most basic gestures are performed. Overdoing a gesture can sometimes come across as aggressive behavior. Second, with regard to eye contact, Britons show a tendency to keep it relatively short, as it can provoke misunderstandings between people. Direct eye contact may be misinterpreted as hostility and aggressiveness. If you are talking to a group, then make eye contact with all people, and do not focus your attention on one person alone. Third, the idiom "keep a stiff upper lip" describes an attribute of British people, who display fortitude in the face of adversity and exercise self-restraint in the expression of emotion. During meetings, this means your British colleagues will approach business with an air of formality and detachment. What is more, British culture shuns physical contact. Except for the handshake, other forms of touching behavior are inappropriate in business relations. Last but not least, one should not ignore object communication, of which the most common form is clothing. Conservative dress is the norm for both men and women in British business culture, where darker colors (black, dark blue, charcoal grey) and heavier fabrics (wool) predominate.

Non-verbal communication is an extremely complex integral part of overall communication skills. However, people are often totally unaware of their non-verbal behavior. Basic awareness of non-verbal communication strategies, over and above what is actually said, can help to improve interaction with others. Knowledge of these signs can be used to encourage people to talk about their concerns and can lead to a greater shared understanding, which is, after all, the purpose of communication.


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