January 13th, 2014
Communication is the process of transmitting, relaying or sending and receiving messages. It involves not only the written or oral words we choose but also what we say with our body which is the nonverbal part of communication. Demonstrative communication is the style of communication that deals with the nonverbal and unwritten communication part of that process. Non-verbal communication includes facial expressions, the tone and pitch of the voice, gestures displayed through body language (kinesics) and the physical distance between the communicators (proxemics). ...view middle of the document...
Soon after birth, babies are already capable of imitating the emotional expressions they see on the faces of others. We are conditioned as early as infancy to read facial expressions through social referencing. Social referencing is the act of observing the facial expressions or tone of voice displayed by another person, often a parent, and using these signs as a cue to decide how to respond to new events, people and objects. (“Raising Children Network”, 2014). While we read other’s expressions we can also mirror them and express our own feelings back to the sender to show we are listening and our feelings regarding the communication. An effective example of using facial expression would be a doctor meeting with his patient to tell her she has breast cancer. His face is solemn and his mouth is slightly downturned to show his sadness regarding the initial message. An ineffective example would be the same doctor delivering the same message to his patient with a smile. Imagine the feelings that would cause for his patient. It is the same message but with two very different results for the receiver!
The tone and pitch of voice can be used by the sender and receiver to indicate feelings about the message. It is not part of the verbal message but is used to control the speed, volume and pitch. The sender can also use pauses to emphasize a point and use pitch on specific words. This can dramatically change the message. An example for word emphasis with pitch would be used varyingly in the following ways; YOU may not go. You MAY not go. You may NOT go. You may not GO. Reading these aloud with the emphasis on the capitalized word changes the message. Now, add pauses before or after specific words or decrease the tone or increase it with the same word set in the example. See how negatively or positively tone and pitch can affect the communication? With this in mind, imagine a Baptist preacher at a funeral using tone and pitch appropriately for the grieving family. He could bring comfort to them using this style of communication. Now imagine this same preacher at a revival preaching a hellfire and brimstone sermon!
Body language can be an effective way for the receiver to send nonverbal cues that the message is or is not understood. An...