Epistemology and Body Language

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Epistemology and Body Language:
A Deeper Look at Nonverbal Communication
Tyler Frahlich
COMM222-Foundations of Communication
Denise Hutchins
Tuesday/Thursday at 12:30pm
April 2, 2013

Executive Summary:
This paper will touch upon the topics of epistemology, body epistemology, body language, and how they all affect each other. It will discuss the categories of body language and how we use them every day. The purpose of this study is to inspire incoming, undeclared freshman to Bridgewater State University to want to pursue a major in communications. After reading this paper and reviewing the information, the incoming freshman will hopefully want to learn more about non-verbal communication, and become inspired to learn more about other ways we communicate. Communications is an interesting major, especially because it helps us understand more about each other as well.

Introduction:

As incoming undeclared freshman to Bridgewater State University, there is a wide range of majors to consider. Bridgewater State is well known for their teaching department, as well as their criminal justice programs and science programs. However, the communication studies department is growing and becoming more popular. A major in communications offers a wide range of areas of study to choose from. Here, there are up to seven areas of concentration to be a part of, such as: * Corporate Communication Concentration

* Dance Education Concentration
* Individualized Concentration
* Media Studies and Communication Technologies Concentration * Speech Communications Concentration
* Theatre Arts Concentration
* Theatre Education Concentration
No matter what students are particularly interested in, if they are considering majoring in communications, there is a concentration that will best fit their interests.

After leaving with a degree in Communications, graduates will find that job opportunities seem almost infinite. Communications is a broad subject, and this type of degree will permit anyone to look for a career in a wide range of fields. Also, graduates will find that after studying communications, they will be more aware of the way they interact with people, making it easier to know how to behave in a job interview, and in the workplace. They will become more conscious of the messages they are relaying, and be more apt to pick up on the messages and signals others are giving out.

There are many ways of communicating in the human world. While our words are some of the most important things we have, allowing us to communicate with others and to share our thoughts, verbal communication is only part of the way we express ourselves. The messages we send to others nonverbally make up more than half of the interpretations about what we are saying, how we are feeling, and exactly what we mean. Body language is crucial to understanding. What our bodies say tells a lot about us; what we mean, what we’re feeling, and who we are. How our bodies come to know things about our world, and how they know to send us signals is known as body epistemology.

Imagine a dancer. For months, she’s been practicing movements, learning steps, and memorizing a routine to perform at the end of the year recital. She has heard the music and hit each mark perfectly so many times, she feels as though she could do the routine in her sleep. In the light of the studio, with mirrors on every wall, she can see herself dancing perfectly to the music. She pushes play, moves, repeats. Over and over again. Finally, backstage at the recital, moments before she goes on, she’ standing in the wings. It is dark and there are other dancers everywhere she turns, waiting for their time to go on stage. As the music from the current routine booms in her eardrums, she finds it almost impossible to concentrate on going over her routine in her head. She peeks out through the curtains, and sees the hundreds of people in chairs facing the stage; there to...
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