Sunday, June 2, 2013

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2417:
Correlating Words, Body Language & Paralanguage -
Sincerity Detection in South Africa
(Video, Photo)

Within this video, Maris Haasbroek, a spokeswoman for all-white settlement, know as "Kleinfontein" within the Republic of South Africa, gives us a great example of insincerity. She is not lying in a literal sense - however a lie is present none the less - as she is insincere. She rhetorically asks the reporter if she is an Afrikaner. Note the asymmetric configuration of her mouth. It is away from the camera - so it is difficult to see. One signal of insincerity is asymmetry of the mouth during speech. It can also be a symptom of as braggadocio or "mouth swagger".

Ms. Haasbroek gives a sincere smile which fades into a very good social smile at the end of this segment (can you tell what the change is in her smile?). Her tone of voice and volume are congruent with what most people would call a pleasant demeanor. Her rhetorical word choice however was not. Moreover her words carry an obvious negative message here - Your kind are not welcome here.

When assessing for sincerity always ask yourself, "Are the words, paralanguage and nonverbals all in agreement? If they are, then sincerity is being felt. If not, then insincerity is being transmitted. Of course, their opinion or "facts" may not be in agreement with your opinion or to your liking (e.g. disagreement does not necessarily indicate insincerity).

Ms. Haasbroek feelings on segregation are strong disagreement with the sentiments of most who will watch this video - and of course with the reporter in the video. And Ms. Haasbroek is pleasant, and not misleading - and yet she is insincere.

In less obvious settings of the everyday - far too often we believe the words, tone and what are falsely perceived to be sincere nonverbals - to our detriment, heartache and danger.

Sincerity is a manner of lying. This is one of the most important distinctions on human interaction you can ever make. How good are you at detecting insincerity?

See also:

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2405:  Anthony Weiner's Running For Mayor of New York  His Body Language & His Sincerity Quotient

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2393:  Cleveland Kidnapper Ariel Castro's daughter Angie Gregg -  Body Language of Sincere Emotional Pain & Empathy

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2207:  Body Language, Sincerity and Mahmoud Abbas  United Nations grants Palestine "Nonmember Observer State"

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 1855:  Sincere Kisses & Closed Eyes 

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2087:  Mitt Romney's Sincerity -  Shaking Hands and Kissing Babies

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 2275:  Lance Armstrong's Insincerity -  Body Language revealed in Oprah Winfrey Interview  Part III

Nonverbal Communication Analysis # 1915: Mitt Romney's Response to Supreme Court's Decision on "Obamacare"