How Static Postures are Interpreted in Thailand
Diana Martinez, Ph.D.
The goal of this research was to determine how Thai citizens interpret various body postures. Non-verbal cues contribute to first impressions, and posture is one of those cues to which participants pay attention to in a conversation. Students from Thailand (n=431) used freely chosen adjectives to describe six postures varying in head position and trunk position. The postures were depicted as silhouettes that were compared on the basis of the adjectives most frequently applied to them. The respondents’ perceptions of the static postures portrayed in the silhouettes did not coincide with the meanings traditionally attributed to those postures in Thai culture; they overlapped more with international interpretations than with the traditional Thai interpretations of postural cues. This discrepancy may have been caused by the participants ‘multicultural backgrounds and the international environment they had been exposed to.
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