ABSTRACT

I believe that there has been inadequate study of emotional bodily dynamics, or the way in which emotions "move". It seems no coincidence that the word "emotion" derives from "motion" or "movement". Human communication consists of both sound and movement. The five methods of sensory communication—sight, touch, smell, hearing, and taste—comprise a sixth paramount aspect: movement and gesture. While a person is speaking, several parts of the body move in ways that can be either evident or fairly imperceptible; in the same way, the listener's movements can be co-ordinated with the speaker's speech rhythm and her bodily movements. When two people talking to each other are filmed, micro-analysis reveals that both are moving in tune to the 132words being spoken, thus creating a type of dance in rhythm with the speech patterns. This phenomenon can appear quite clearly in the rhythmic conversation between mother and baby (proto-conversation). The mother’s voice is already familiar to her newborn—after all, she has had nine months to get used to it in her womb!