Thursday, June 25, 2015

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3227: Bobby Jindal's, "... I am tanned ..." remark - What does his Body Language tell us? (VIDEO, PHOTOS)

Regardless of their political affiliation, nationality, ethnicity, skin color or affinity for tanning beds - most everyone found Governor Bobby Jindal's reference yesterday to being "tanned" extremely odd and prejudicial. Yet what do his nonverbal signals show during this statement?

Beginning at about 16:14, Governor Jindal says, ".... In case it's not clear by now - I am running for President without permission from headquarters in Washington D.C. [applause] ... but rest assured, I am tanned, rested and ready for this fight ..."

This image was captured at 16:36 - just before he says, "... but rest assured ..."

This photo is from 16:41 just after the Louisiana Governor says, "... I am ready for this fight ..."

In both of these moments Bobby Jindal displays a (lower) central forehead contraction with a (social aka false aka insincere) mouth smile. Regardless of how the mouth is configured, whenever there is a simultaneous central forehead contraction (CFC) - the "smile" is never sincere.

Now in the governor's defense - we all display this expression from time-to-time. When? We make this expression when we feel arrogant (for as human beings, we all occasionally feel arrogant - yet this is not the only expression of arrogance), or when we feel incredulous (and of course there are other nonverbal signals of disbelief) or when we are feeling contempt (hopefully not too often, but we all sometimes feel this emotion - and, again, there are other facial signs of contempt). Was the governor feeling any of these here? If so which one? If the (false) mouth-smile is seen together with a CFC is chronically - what very reliably does this tell us?

If we go back and look at Governor Jindal's mouth - we see that in both of these moments (when there was also a pause in his speaking) his mouth was vectored primarily laterally - rather than vertically (as it would have been seen with a sincere smile). One way to help make this distinction is the tension visible in his "mustache area" (a term used regardless of any facial hair or gender). The mouth in the second photo projects an additional component of bitterness. Why?

See also:

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3226: Bobby Jindal Jumps In the 2016 Presidential Race - Puts "Family Meeting" online - Body Language

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 2124:  This Body Language-Facial Display  Should always make you think "Insincere"

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

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 2945: Roger Goodell's Interview regarding Ray Rice - Denies NFL saw Video before Monday