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Chapter 10

Chapter 10

6 Pages
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Department
Communication Studies
Course Code
CS202
Professor
Darryl Burgwin

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Chapter 10
THE EFFECTS OF EYE BEHAVIOR ON HUMAN COMMUNICATION
It is common to associate various eye movements with a wide range of human conditions
or traits: downward glances are associated with modesty; wide eyes with frankness,
wonder, naivety, or terror; generally immobile facial muscles and a rather constant stare
with coldness; and eyes rolled upward with fatigue or to suggest that another's behavior is
a bit weird.
Another nonhuman feature that has received scholarly attention is "eyespots," eye-shaped
images located on
Some feel that excessive blinking may be associated with various stages of anxiety--as if
attempting to cut off reality.
"eye flash," in which the eyelids are briefly opened without the accompanying
involvement of the eve- brows, for less than a second, used to emphasize particular
words, usually adjectives (Walker & Trimboli, 1983).
The eyebrow flash is yet another, but quite different gesture, discussed in depth in
Chapter 2.
GAZE AND MUTUAl. GAZE
Gaze refers to an individual's looking at another person; mutual gaze" refers to a
situation in which two interactants are looking at each other, usually in the region of
the face
At a distance of 3 meters, face-directed gazing can be distinguished, and shifting the
direction of the gaze by 1 centimeter can reliably be detected from a distance of 1 meter.
FUNCTIONS OF GAZING
Regulating the flow of communication
Monitoring feedback
Reflecting cognitive activity
Expressing emotions
Communicating the nature of the interpersonal relationship
REGULATING THE FLOW OF COMMUNICATION
In some instances, eye gaze establishes a virtual obligation to interact.
As Iong as we can avoid eye gaze in a seemingly natural way, it is much easier to avoid
interaction.
A length of gaze that exceeds this acknowledgment glance is likely to signal a desire to
initiate a conversation
Because speakers gaze less than listeners, it is the speaker's gazing that determines
moments of mutual looking. During these moments, it is highly likely that the listener
will respond with a "listener response," also called a "back-channel response," that
signifies attention
Speakers generally look less often than listeners. But speakers do seem to glance during
grammatical breaks, at the end of a thought unit or idea, and at the end of the utterance.
Although glances at these junctures can signal the other person to assume the speaking
role, we also use these glances to obtain feedback, to see how we arc being received, and
to see if the other will let us continue.
A speakers gaze at the completion of an utterance may help signal the yielding of a
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speaking turn, but listener-directed gazes do not always accompany the smooth exchange
of speaking turns
MONITORING FEEDBACK
When people seek feedback concerning the reactions of others, they gaze at the other
person. If the other person is looking back, it is usually interpreted as a sign of attention to
what is being said.
A chronic feeling of being invisible is sometimes reported by people with borderline
personality disorder.
emotional contagion, whereby one person's mood or emotion is influenced by
another's mood or emotion via subtle and mostly unconscious processes
Effective monitoring of group members via gaze has been shown to be higher in women
than men: women spread their gaze: more evenly around a group than men do
REFLECTING COGNITIVE ACTIVITY
Both listeners and speakers have a tendency to avoid gazing at others when trying to
process difficult or complex ideas.
People avoid gaze more on reflective questions than factual ones and on more difficult
questions--more difficult in factual content or in terms of the length of the temporal search
required,
When a person moves his or her eyes in a particular direction, it is thought to reflect
activity, in the opposite hemisphere of the brain: Left hemisphere activity, often involving
intellectual and linguistic tasks, is associated with right- ward glances, whereas right
hemisphere activity, often involving spatial or emotional processing, is associated with
leftward glances
EXPRESSING EMOTIONS
And as we indicate later, downcast or averted eyes are often associated with feelings
of sadness, shame, or embarrassment.
Surprise
Brows are raised so they are curved and high. Skin below the brow is stretched.
Eyelids are opened; the upper lid is raised, and the lower lid is drawn down; and the
white of the eye shows above the iris, and often below as well.
Fear Brows are raised and drawn together. The upper eyelid is raised, exposing the white of
the eye, called the sclera, and the lower eyelid is tensed and drawn up.
DisgustDisgust is shown primarily in the lower face and in the lower eyelids. Lines show
below the lower lid, and the lid is pushed up but not tense. The brow is lowered,
Inverting the upper lid.
Anger The brows are lowered and drawn together, and vertical lines appear between them.
The lower lid is tensed and may or may not be raised. The upper lid is tensed and may
or may not be lowered by the action of the brow. The eyes have a hard stare and may
have a bulging appearance.
Happiness
Happiness is shown primarily in the lower face and lower eyelids. The lower eyelid
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Description
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