Interrogative looks and play-faces in the management of interpersonal distance

Abstract : The aim of the article is to describe the nonverbal communication patterns that passengers of the Delhi Metro use to manage density-induced territorial intrusions, and to identify some of the contextual variables that affect their deployment. After introducing the notion of " interrogative look " and the dataset, the following section depicts the techniques that passengers were observed to employ in order to solve the problem of territorial intrusion without breaking anonymity. The bulk of the analysis deals with the structure and function of " interrogative looks " , an objectively defined pattern of nonverbal behavior that the touched uses to signal her discontent to the toucher. The rest of the section describes a less frequent pattern whereby passengers contagiously signal the playful character of their mischiefs. Next is examined if and how density, i.e. the number of individuals per surface unit, influences as a contextual variable the occurrence of interrogative looks. The closing discussion considers the main findings from the standpoint of their local specificity.
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Martin Aranguren. Interrogative looks and play-faces in the management of interpersonal distance. Interaction Studies, 2015, 16 (3), pp.526-552. ⟨10.1075/is.16.3.08ara⟩. ⟨hal-01335817⟩

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