Verbal Communication.docx - Verbal Communicaton IntroducTon...

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Verbal Communication Introduction This node will explore verbal communication and the use of both spoken and written language. The node will show the key components of verbal communication with an overview to the differences among verbal and nonverbal language, how verbal language communicates in a context, verbal and nonverbal cues, and the verbal communication being a cultural, politeness, and face theory. The following video shows the techniques for organizing messages to other cultures: Learning Materials Mary walks into a bar with a cut finger looking for a bandage. The bartender says, "Hey lady, we have a drink named after you!" Poor, bloody Mary responds, "You have a drink named Bandage?" As an American, we all understand the word “bar” and possibly the dry humor of this joke. This cultural knowledge puts certain people in a certain frame of reference, a context, where they can understand and interrupt the message being communicated. The same word, bar, has a different meaning for a Scotsman, Englishman, and Irishman who use the word pub for a bar, and who use the word bloody as an intensifier to their message. This suggests that language is cultural. This opening example illustrates that language is much more than grammatical expressions, and people must consider the cultural expectations during intercultural communication. Verbal Language Communicates in a Context Verbal language communicates in a context, and intercultural communication is dependent on the context in which it occurs. Depending on the contextual factors present during the communication, individuals will either focus more on the verbal codes, while others will focus on more on nonverbal signs. In low-context countries such as the United States, Scandinavian
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countries, Germany, and Switzerland, communication occurs primarily through explicit statements in verbal speech and text. The focus is on what is said, instead of how it is said. In high-context countries such as Japan, China, and Mexico, communication occurs largely as body language and the use of silence. The focus is more on how it is said, instead of what is said. In essence, high-context communication involves a message where nothing is uttered. Verbal and Nonverbal Cues It is important to understand that words alone have no meaning. Only people can give meaning to words, and culture impacts the meaning. Most people make the assumption that when individuals speak, they are communicating verbally. It is important not to confuse speech as the sole characteristic of verbal communication. Verbal communication involves the use of all language that includes words both spoken and written. This is in contrast to nonverbal communication that is a silent language and does not include words. Verbal and nonverbal
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