The field of nonverbal communication is a strategic site for demonstrating the inextricable interrelationship between nature and culture in human behaviour. This book, originally published in 1997, aims to explode the misconception that "biology" is something that automatically precludes or excludes "culture". Instead, it points to the necessary grounding of our social and cultural capabilities in biological givens and elucidates how biological factors are systematically co-opted for cultural purposes.
The book presents a complex picture of human communicative ability as simultaneously biologically and socioculturally influenced, with some capacities apparently more biologically hard-wired than others: face recognition, imitation, emotional communication, and the capacity for language. It also suggests that the dividing line between nonverbal and linguistic communication is becoming much less clear-cut.
The contributing authors are leading researchers in a variety of fields, writing here for a general audience. The book is divided into sections dealing with, respectively, human universals, evolutionary and developmental aspects of nonverbal behaviour within a sociocultural context, and finally, the multifaceted relationships between nonverbal communication and culture.
Table of Contents
Preface. 1. Nonverbal Communication: Crossing the Boundary Between Culture and Nature Ullica Segerstråle and Peter Molnaìr Part 1: New Findings on the Universality of Human Nonverbal Communication 2. Universal Facial Expressions of Emotion: An Old Controversy and New Findings Paul Ekman and Dacher Keltner 3. Psychophysiological Reactions to Facial Expressions Ulf Dimberg 4. Universals in Interpersonal Interactions Wulf Schiefenhövel Part 2: Development of Emotions in a Social and Cultural Context 5. Preverbal Communication in Humans and the Genesis of Culture Hanuš Papoušek and Mechthild Papousek 6. Development of Emotions and Their Expression in Task-Oriented Situations in Infants and Preschool Children Klaus Schneider 7. Nonverbal Communication in Nonhuman Primates: Implications for the Emergence of Culture Stephen J. Suomi Part 3: The Social Role of Nonverbal Communication and Emotions: Evolutionary Inferences 8. Communication Signals of Animals: Contributions of Emotion and Reference Peter Marler and Christopher S. Evans 9. The Social Function of "Smile" and "Laughter": Variations Across Primate Species and Societies Signe Preuschoft and Jan A.R.A.M. van Hooff 10. Primate Communication and the Ecology of a Language Niche Alexandra Maryanski 11. The Evolution of Emotions: The Nonverbal Basis of Human Social Organization Jonathan H. Turner Part 4: Nonverbal Communication as a Mediator Between Nature and Culture 12. Nonverbal Communication and Culture Walter Goldschmidt 13. Posture as an Interface Between Biology and Culture Michel Heller 14. Sign Languages and Gestures in Medieval Europe: Monasteries, Courts of Justice, and Society August Nitschke 15. Nonverbal Communication and the Emergence of Moral Sentiments Robert Frank. List of Authors. Author Index. Subject Index.
Ullica Segerstrale and Peter Molnar