How to offend and apologise without words? Nonverbal communication acts in cultural perspective
The aim of the article is to present a variety of ways in which members of different cultures can express their positive and negative opinions and feelings about a certain issue, as well as to indicate the effectiveness of emblematic gestures in interaction. Emblems are gestures closely related to culture, they belong to the repertoire of nonverbal means of communication of native speakers and are regarded as complete speech acts. To illustrate the role of emblematic gestures in culture, there has been shown a selection of offensive gestures and gestures of good will used in Poland, Greece and Great Britain. Nonverbal speech/communication acts have been analysed from the synchronic perspective, which enabled a comparison of these gestures, presenting various pragmatic factors influencing nonverbal communication acts, and highlighting the importance of cultural competence in interpreting particular acts.