Vocal tone and pitch. Posture. Eye contact and blinking. Gestures. Gait. Body type and clothing choices. How much of our communication is nonverbal?
In Understanding Nonverbal Communication, you'll discover that nonverbal communication is less intentional and harder to control than the words you choose to speak. Because you are less aware of it than you are of your words, it provides better clues to what you are feeling and thinking. You can deliberately decide what to say, but from the deeper subcortical regions of your brain come your involuntary nonverbal expressions, including sweat, pupil dilation, facial movements, or blushing cheeks - any of which can speak more about your intentions or emotions than your actual words might. In 12 revealing lectures, you'll explore the history, evolution, and context of both the outright obvious and the sublimely subtle nuances of personal expression.
The science of nonverbal communication has revealed intriguing insights into everything from how aspects of your reactions are biologically hardwired to how you are subconsciously influenced to vote by political speakers. You'll come to realize that the "invisible" world of nonverbal communication was always visible to you. You will explore the role of nonverbal communication as it relates to understanding other people's worldviews and interaction styles. With careful observation, you can capitalize on this science to further appreciate human expression, smooth social interactions, and strengthen relationships - helping to make the world a better and more accepting place.
©2016 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2016 The Great Courses
Professor Frank's presentational style is excellent. However, the focus of most of this book is not about communication between/among people but how the external environment impacts our perceptions of other people. A lot of that material is boring.
When I drive, I read... uhm listen. I like SciFi, Fantasy, some Detective and Espionage novels and Religion. Now and then I will also listen to something else.
In 12 thirty minutes lectures, Prof. Mark G. Frank a social psychologist from the State University of New York introduces the novice to nonverbal communication. The more the lectures advanced, the more I came under the impression that deciphering nonverbal ques are not as easy or exact as films and television programs wants to make us believe.
I came across some very interesting ideas during the six hours course. For quite some time I am aware of concepts such as a high context society and a low context society. I was not aware of mono-chronic time and poly-chronic time. I was impressed by the way in which Prof. Frank debunked some urban myths, such as the idea that 93% of what we communicate is non-verbal or that someone that looks you in the eyes can't lie.
In one regard the course fell a bit short of my expectations. When playing a board game like "The Sheriff of Nottingham," where identifying lying and cheating are part of the rules, I am still left in the cold. This course will not change you in a body language wizard! Some of the content is also quite well-known.
That said, I the course definitely made me look at certain aspects of non-verbal language in a new context. I would recommend it to someone who is an almost complete novice to deciphering nonverbal communication.
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