Oscar Pistorius's trial for the alleged murder of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp began earlier this week in Pretoria, South Africa. The above image was taken yesterday in court. Pistorius's mouth opening/lips are configured in what is known as an partial (incomplete) "Inward Lip Roll" (ILR).
The inward lip roll is the psyche's attempt to suppress the outward manifestation and the internal escalation of strong emotion. The majority of the time this body language is seen during negative emotional moments. And although it is NOT the case in this example, the ILR may also be commonly seen during the suppression of joy-laughter and thus it may also be a component of some expressions of duping delight. It is also seen during moments of physical exertion associated with mental focus.
Intriguingly, Mr. Pistorius's pupils are quite large at this moment. Given the context of the inward lip roll and the other nonverbal clues on Oscar's face, what do his dilate pupils indicate? What about his nostrils? Are they flared or normal baseline? What is the significance of his clenched jaw muscles? Is the tension of his mid-face increased, decreased or normal? All of these additional observations provide valuable clues as to Pistorius's thoughts and the nuance of his emotional tone.
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