Week 9 Respons/ Animal Communication

In this week’s lecture, Rachel Mayeri’s video interested me the most. Her video series of Primate Cinema, illustrates how baboons communicate with each other through different body language and movement. I was impressed by how much details Mayeri showed in her video series about different facial expression and mouth movement of the leading bamboo. Bamboo’s expression made me felt that they were very smart and have variety kinds of emotions. Since Bamboo have similar gene as human, their facial expression and body movement are very likely as human. The video was supposed to show for bamboos and see their reactions. However, it was more important for human to think about how human and other animal’s gestures and body languages were created. Also, how do human and animals understand and respond to these “signals”.

Human beings have so many different ways to communicate with each other and also many different body languages to express their feelings. For example : gesture, face, our tones, and lips. In the documentary of body language, body language expert Janine Driver states that only 7% of human communication was through the actual words and 93% of human communication was nonverbal.

For example, when Bill Clinton had a peace negotiation with two mideastern Prime Minister Ehud Barak and Chairman Yasir Arafat, they had very interesting body language signals. Although before they went in to the door, they were all smiling. However, when they entered the door, the two Prime Ministers tried to push the other one the go into the door first. In the west, it means polite to let other go into the door first. On the contrary, in the mideast, the people who goes into the door last means “in charge”. There were almost a physical fight between the two prime administrators. Body language in different countries have different meanings. Some time it is easy for people to misunderstand other people’s meaning.

If people understand or pay more attention to body languages , we can make our communication more valuable and if we are in businesses, we could make it more profitable. Even though we do not pay that much attention to body language, it plays a huge part in our daily communication.

Animals also has their ways to communicate with each other and with other animals. In the video, gorilla Koko’s was actually showing her understanding of expressing different words by using body languages and also use her “word” to interact with human. While Robin Williams smiled, Koko smiled too. Grillas actually understand to play with people and they understand using human’s way to express their needs and emotions.

The second video was when Koko play with a kitten. She was acting like a human taking care of the kitten and try to protect the kitten. Even though gorillas can not talk like human, they are very smart and they have the ability to learn things from human.

-Liwei Wang


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