Thursday, August 16, 2012


Written speech is broken up by the period, the comma the colon, the semicolon, the question mark, and the exclamation point.  Along with these punctuation marks, the arrangement of printed words into sentences, paragraphs, and chapters constitutes nonverbalized comments and instructions to the reader about how ideas and thoughts are intended to be broken up.  Correspondingly, in spoken language, slowing down the rate of speech at the end of a sentence, pausing, and speaking louder and softer are the verbal and gestural equivalents of punctuation marks.  In object language, similar devices make for emphasis.  Objects may be grouped in such a way that the eye perceives imaginary boundary lines that are designed to break up space, inasmuch as two clusters of articles in otherwise empty space are usually treated as separate entities.

Slapp Happy: The Drum (Link)

Text:  Jurgen Ruesch and Weldon Kees, Nonverbal Communication, Notes on the Visual Perception of Human Relations, Berkeley and Los Angeles, University of California Press, 1956.

No comments:

Post a Comment