Friday, October 3, 2014

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 2972: Rachel Respess, Destrehan High School Teacher Arrested and Smiling Incongruent with Emotional Context (PHOTO, VIDEO)

This is one of the "mug shots" of Rachel Respess. Along with her former colleague Shelley Dufresne, the two teachers from Destrehan High School in Destrehan, Louisiana were arrested on 30 September and 1 October respectively for alleged "carnal knowledge" with the same juvenile via a threesome (a then 16 year-old male student).

Her nonverbal signs in this moment are unusual - for Ms. Respess is suppressing a smile - during a mug shot. It is rather subtle and most people will misidentify this emotion (e.g., this is not contempt) or overlook it entirely. A smile, even a barely discernible one, in the context of a mug shot strongly suggests a sociopathic personality - or that she knows something we don't. In the second scenario in particular, such smiling out of context is a form of what Dr. Paul Ekman has termed, "Duping Delight".

Whenever you witness a smile which is incongruent with the emotional setting, you should always ask yourself, why? It may be nothing serious (e.g., a low consequence and humorous example of duping delight - and indeed comedians often use a deliberate form of this to engender smiling and laughing in their audiences) - however this is a question you should always endeavor to answer.

See also:

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 2971: Not Giving Good Actors an Easy Pass - Interstellar Trailer - When the Body Language is Not Congruent with Real Life

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 2855: Hillary Clinton, 2016 Presidential Race and Duping Delight 

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 2497: Steve Carell, Graham Norton and  Duping Delight Microexpression, Reminiscing about the Chest Waxing Scene from - The 40 Year Old Virgin

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 2050: George Zimmerman's Interview on Fox - Microexpression of Contempt and Duping Delight

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 2946: Barack Obama's 10 September 2014 ISIS Speech - Body Language Tells

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2322:  Jeb Bush & Matt Lauer - Which one is the Narcissist?  Body Language Red Flags

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 2691: Barbara Bush, "I Love Bill Clinton"