TradexiaobethSend PMAdd buddyxiaobeth(xiaobeth)Offline UID7238Thread212Digest16Credits6865Read Perm.90From Online48 HoursReg. Time15-4-2010Last Visit8-12-2010 Forum LegendThread212Digest16Credits6865Money5000 From Reg. Time15-4-20101#PrintSize: tTPost at 16-6-2010 23:30 | Only View Authorhand gestures in China Post Last Edit by xiaobeth at 16-6-2010 23:37 China is one of the largest countries in the world, thebirth place of ancient culture and civilization. In general, one may say thatby the influence of Confucius' philosophical thinking, the Chinese have becomemore reserved or at least the gestures expressing emotions are comparativelyless expressive. As the verbal language, the nonverbal register of gestureslasts for a long time, but in different historic times, there are differentgestures. From a historical point of view we will distinguish between dead andcontemporary gestures. This gesture categories are metaphorical because theremay be archic gestures which are still used somewhere in China, but in generalwe will try to pick up only gestures which are out of use today. The metaphorsrefer to common idea of 'dead metaphors', since the gestures are to a greatextend symbolic expressions of meaning often in combination with iconic mode ofrepresentation. In this way we are putting forward the idea of analysinggestures as metaphors. The problem with the term "dead gesture" inrealtion to "dead metphor" is that dead metaphors are very much inuse although they are not conceptualized as such by the speakers but what wecall "dead gestures" are not used anymore, they are archaic, as thereas archaic words and expressions in every language. However, since we considerthe metaphorical aspect of gestures as very important we will keep the analogy.Dead GesturesGestures according to power relation Dead gestures are gestures whichhave existed in ancient times and which are not used or understandabletoday. Like verbal language, the gesture has birth and death.Every gesture is born based on a specific cultural background.For example, China is a country with many nationalities. Amongthem, the'Hanna' nationality, with over 90% population, is thebiggest one. In the past centuries, 'Hanna' was conquered byother nationalities. In that peroid, the living custom ofChinesepeople was influenced bythe ruling class. For example, in QingDanasty, burberry wallet women Chinese people had special, in modern eyes, strange waysof expressing meaning which were influenced of the "Mang"nationality (the ruling class at that time).When men of similarsocial status sent greetings to each other, they used the followinggesture, , but whennoble women met or sent greetings to each other, they use gestureslike this one ; . The following picture shows how to meet the emperor This gesture, called 'koutou', iscomplicated and has strict regulations. It consists of three steps:i) right sleeve brushing the leftarm from top to the fingers, ii) left sleeve brushing the rightarm from top to the fingers,iii) bend down, one knee on the floor,right hand on the back and left hand hitting the floor.People had to complete series ofactions to say "yes" and listen the imperial edict,no mistakes were permitted, otherwise people would be punished.When women met the emperor, they should show pleasant feelingson their faces in order to please the emperor. The gestures mentionedabove were very popular during the "Qing Dynasty" amongthe officials and nobles, but not very popular among the commonpeople. Inpresent, all of them have died, because the kingdomwas overthrowedand the ruling mens burberry wallet class was changed. These gesturesdisappeared quickly. We can only see them in movies, but the descendantsof "Mang" in Beijing are proud and glad to talk abouttheir great history .In 1970s (the culture revolution),China was under theleadership of Mao, people used series ofgestures and emotions to show their loyalty to him andtheirconfidence in the revolution. Please, see the following two pictures"I am loyal to Chairman Mao!" burberry wallet sale "I am a true revolutionary!"These gestures were popularly used at that time. The gestures occurred everywhere,between different people when they talked about Mao. For example,people use these special gestures and emotion when they took picturesof themselves.The language is changing,but also some gestures are changing in the process. Today theyare like souvenirs, representing the past culture. However, someold gestures, as well as some archaic words and expression, arestill used today, such as the gesture equal to the expression"Thank you for serving me!". This gesture appeared duringthe Qing Dynasty when Emperor Qianlong visited South China withcivil clothes, that is, in secret of the common people. Duringthe visit, the emperor served tea to his officers, but since theywere in public they couldn't use the'koutou' gesture illustratedabove and that is why they invented burberry wallets a more discreet gesture ofshowing respect and subordination . Here the fingers move up and down continuously, thus, metaphoricallydepicting repeated bowing, not with heads down to the ground butwith fingers to the burberry men wallet table. From that time,the gesture was spread generation by generation. Being conscious of the meaning of thisgesture may be very important in certain interculturalcontextssince the same sequence of finger movements on the table expressnervousness and impatience in many European and Western countries.Contemporary gesturesContemporary gestures are gestureswhich are currently used gestures in one social community,Burberry Outlet sale Online Store by Factory (157). Sincechina is a very large country there are significant linguisticand cultural differences between the distant regions. Most typicalis the distinction between north and south China. However, moststudies have been concentrated on analyzing differences in verbalcommunication, habits and traditions but not on differences andsimilarities between gestures. Thus we will distinguish betweentwo main regional types of gestures: gestures from the northand gestures from the south.Furthermore, there are differentthings we want to express and do with gestures. We will distinguishbetween: gestures of emotion, on one side, which we will defineas emotive nonverbal acts, thus echoing the definitionof speech acts, such as promise, agreementand gestures of counting,on the other.Positive emotions and speech actsgreetingsWhen you meet your professor youshould lower your head and bend slightly to show respect. Thesame posture is used when a young man is greeting an old man. Shaking hands is not used betweenpeople of radically different status, as the previous two cases,but between socially equal people, friends or businessman.agreement This gesture is used in informalsituations, when you reach an agreement with somebody else. InChina, it is not only a gesture, but also a good wish. Each ofyou hopes the agreement will be long.promise Ifyou put your right hand on burberry wallet men theposition of the heart means it "sincere promise" butsince a promise is a promise only if it is sincere (Searle, Whatis a speech act?, in (ed.) Davis, S.,Pragmatics. A Reader.Oxford University Press, N.Y/Oxford, 1991, pp. 254-265.) The ancientChinese thought that the calculating functions and the memoryof human beings are based in the heart, thus this gesture is atypical iconic metaphor.satisfaction This gesture represents a feelingof self-satisfaction. It is usually used by women when they feelsatisfied and don't want other people to know it. Typical forthe Chinese culture as a whole is that Chinese women express theirfeelings in a more introvert or discreet manner.wishes "Thank you!" "I wish you good fortune!"In China, when you don't know howto express your gratitude to somebody, may be gesture 1 will behelpful, you don't need to say a single word, but everyone knowsthat you are expressing your thankfulness. But when you gesticulatelike 2 especially on festivals, all the people you gesticulateto will be very happy, because you wish them goodfortune.Thankyouforserving me! " Nord Chinese gesture for "Thank you for serving me!"South Chinese gesture for "Thank you for serving me!"In China, when being served, it willbe very polite to make a gesture to express your feeling of thankfulness,but you should do it in different way if you are in the differentareas of China. In North China, you should do like that like in1, but in South China, you should do 'the koutou' gesture (desribedalso as a dead gesture above). It isespecially important inpublic occasions.Neutralemotionhesitation This gesture symbolizes confrontationwith difficult problems and attempts to solve them, in other way,it meanshesitation.Negativeemotioninsulting When people show gestures like thisone, that means that they look down upon somebody. And when youuse one of your fingers to scrape your face looking at somebody,in fact, the corresponding verbal expression may be said to be"Shame on you!"irritationandinstigating If someone insults you, but you don'twant to fight with him, the following gesture may express yourirritation. It means "Damn you!", but if you make thisgesture first, it means "If you have guts, comeand takeme!".Counting Chinese people have particular gesturesfor counting. They can be different in different parts of China.The gestures for 1,2,3and 5 aresimilar to the corresponding European gestures. Therest are as follows:South Chinese Gesture for 4.(left)North Chinese gesture for 4.(right)Gesture for 6.South Chinese gesture for 7.North Chinese gesture for 7.Gesture for 8.Gesture for 9.Gesture for 10.