Thursday, May 24, 2018

Body Language Analysis No. 4291: Donald Trump and Disguising Disgust - "I don't know who the hell wrote that line" - Nonverbal and Emotional Intelligence (VIDEO, PHOTOS)

Admit it. There are times when you want to flip someone off - but, given the social setting, you would absolutely suffer the consequences. Often times this emotional dissonance occurs at the subconscious or edge-of-consciousness level. In such scenarios, you may find yourself grabbing your middle finger beneath the table, scratching your neck or ear with that same finger - or maybe using that extended third digit to pull up your sock. These are examples of what is known as Partial Emblematic Slip".

In nonverbal parlance, the adjective Emblematic is used because this is an example of an emblem (the backside of an isolated middle finger) - a gesture which has a Universally understood meaning around the World. They're termed Partial because the gestures are not expressed in a blatant, full-fledged form. And these are called Slips because they're initiated subconsciously.

There are many types of Partial Emblematic Slips - and although, in this particular example, the President did not display his middle finger - he does show us another classic cousin.

Beginning at 0:10, the President continues saying, "...  So your vote in - 2018 is every bit as important as your vote - in - 2016. Although I'm not sure I really believe that but ya know , Ω ... I don't know who the hell wrote that line - I'm not s- ... But it's still important - remember."

During 0:22, just after he says, "... Although I'm not sure I really believe that but ya know ...", Donald Trump turns to his left and sniffs deeply (notated by the Ω symbol above). But look carefully - and in slow motion. What this behavior really is, is another Partial Emblematic Slip. This is a Deep Disgust Display Disguised as Sniffing. It's a ruse hiding in plain sight.

Now go back one second - to 0:21. He first displays a less dramatic - but open example of disgust (notated in the dialog above by the symbol). His extended blink, although not required - amplifies his disgust. As with a lot of human behavior - first we see a hint, a preamble of things to come - then, after a brief suppression, the act becomes more fully expressed. This is a quintessential demonstration of that phenomenon.

SUMMARY:  President Trump sniffs a lot - a whole lot. But not all sniffs are created equal. Granted, from time-to-time we all suffer from upper respiratory tract infections - and on occasion a bit of allergies. Then there's post-nasal drip. Sometimes excessive sniffing is a manifestation of nervousness. And of course, there are other possible etiologies. But certainly some of this Presidential sniffing is simply his subconscious camouflaging his disgust - and this is a textbook example.

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See also:

Body Language Analysis No. 4257: Mark Zuckerberg Testifies Before The Senate

Body Language Analysis No. 4208: Rod Rosenstein and the Indictment of Russians

Body Language Analysis No. 4073: Prince Harry and Melania Trump Meet in Canada for Invictus Games - Harry's Hand Signal

Body Language Analysis No. 3983: Female Kurdish sniper fighting IS narrowly cheats death

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3885: Vogue's 73 Questions with Selena Gomez