2. What are Hand Gestures?Hand gestures are a way of communicatingwith others and conveying your feelings.These gestures are most helpful when one isspeaking to someone with no language incommon. The meanings of hand gestures indifferent cultures may translate into differentthings. To explain my point, I take a verycommon example of former PresidentGeorge W. Bush who had to face a majorfaux pas during a visit to Australia. He tried tosignal a peace sign by waving the two fingeror V-sign at the crowd. 3. You may think of this as a simple gesture, buthe committed a major error. Instead of hispalm facing outwards, it faced inwards. Themeaning of this hand gesture in Australiameant he was asking the crowd to go screwthemselves! A grave error committed by thethen most powerful man in the world.Therefore, it is very important to understandthe meanings of gestures before you travel todifferent countries. 4. Before you communicate with people indifferent cultures, you need to understand themeaning of gestures. Those considered as agood gestures in one country may be termedas an offensive gesture in some countries.So, if you are a frequent flier to differentcountries, improve your communication skillsby learning the meaning of hand gestures.The following paragraphs contain someinformation related to the meanings ofcommon gestures. 5. Interpretation of HandGestures The following slides will cover some ofthe common hand gestures with theirmeanings. You will be surprised toknow that some gestures that youperform almost casually has a reallydifferent meaning in different cultures. 6. Thumbs Up 7. Thumbs UpThe thumbs up sign in most Americanand European cultures meaning thingsare going according to your plans orsomething you approve of. However, thegoing good sign translates into a rudeand offensive gesture in Islamic andAsian countries. In Australia, it meansOK, but if you move it up and down, it isconsidered as a grave insult. 8. Thumbs Down 9. Thumbs Down The thumbs down sign obviouslymeans the opposite of a thumbs upsign. It is an indication of somethingthat is bad or something that you donot approve of. It also indicates thatsomething or someone has failed. Thethumbs down sign is not used as oftenas the thumbs up sign. This is a rudehand gesture and an arrogant way toindicate failure. 10. Thumbs Down Hand SignFingers Crossed 11. Thumbs Down Hand SignFingers Crossed Crossing of fingers is considered as asign of wishing for good luck or fortune. Italso may interpret that someone ishoping for something good to happen.The cross may have originated from thePagan symbols that means to ward offevil. Many times people cross theirfingers before telling a lie, as it isbelieved to countervail the evil thatcomes of the lie. It is a positive andnegative symbol as it interprets both luckor lies. 12. Stop 13. Stop When one raises the hand up with the palmfacing towards the opposite person, it means tostop in America and British countries. In a stopsign, the hand is tilted forward. This means theperson is in an authoritative figure and askingone to Stop. If the fingers are pushing down, itwill indicate that the gesture is indicated for theperson to sit down or settle. This is not adefensive hand gesture and is in fact a gesture totake control over the person it is intended for. Ifyou were to use this sign in Singapore orMalaysia, it would mean that one is trying to hailsomeones attention like a waiter or asking forpermission to speak. 14. Thats Enough 15. There is one common meaning of thishand gesture in different cultures. Thishand gesture is commonly used bymothers and teachers. This hand gestureis used to warn a single individual. It is away to silent an individual and ask themto pay attention. This is considered as arude gesture in a professionalenvironment and termed as adomineering behavior. 16. The Moutza 17. The MoutzaWhile talking to a friend, you may open yourpalm and stretch out your fingers. But, if youwere in Greece, the same gesture would beconsidered as a traditional manual insult. Itmeans that you are thrusting your hand in theface of the opposite person and using a brashna. This suggests that you are asking theperson to eat shit and leave you alone. Themoutza in American terms is similar to the handgesture that means talk to the hand. 18. The Dog Call 19. The Dog CallThe dog call is a gesture where you curl your finger andsummon someone towards you. This movement ismostly seen carried out by a tempting woman to herman. However, do not use this seductive hand gesturein Philippines. This is because this is one of the worstforms of hand gesture that is to be used only for dogs.This hand gesture could get you arrested in Philippinesor maybe even punishable by breaking your finger, sothat you never ever attempt to try this offensive gestureagain. In Asian countries like Japan, the dog call isconsidered a rude gesture. In Singapore, it is indicationof death. countries like Japan, the dog call isconsidered a rude gesture. In Singapore, it is indicationof death. 20. O.K 21. The Okay or A-OK or O.K sign is mostly considered onof the good hand gestures. The hand gesture is used bycurling the index finger over the thumb and theremaining fingers extended above them. This meansthat everything is good, well or O.K. Also, this sign isusually used by divers to indicate all is well or OK as thethumbs up sign means ascending. However, in LatinAmerica and France it is considered as an insulting signas it is thought to mean your anus and has negativeconnotations attached to it. In Australia, it means zeroand in Germany it may mean a job well done or anoffensive insult depending on the region you visit. InNew Zealand, this sign is not used much andconsidered a cheap way of saying OK. In Turkey, theOK sign means one is a homosexual 22. Fingers Snap 23. Snapping fingers over and over maymean one is trying to remembersomething someone has forgotten. InLatin America, snapping fingers meansasking one to hurry up. In Great Britainand America, one snaps fingers whenone remembers something or gets anidea. However, in many cultures,snapping fingers close to someonesface is considered to be an offensivegesture. 24. I am Running Out of Time 25. I am Running Out of TimeMany times when one is getting late or wants toindicate running out of time, they tend to watchtheir wrist. This is despite the fact that they mayor may not be wearing a watch on the wrist. Thisis a subconscious gesture to indicate an end ofconversation or a subtle way that one shouldtake leave. However, do not attempt this gesturein Middle Eastern countries. It is believed thatonce a conversation starts, it should be allowedto take its time to complete. Gesturing to end theconversation is considered a rude insult. 26. Pointing Fingers 27. Pointing FingersIn America and European cultures, it isconsidered rude to point fingers atothers. This hand gesture is an indicationof a dominant - to - subordinate behaviorin the professional world. It is considereda gesture to single out an individual froma crowd. This aggressive signal is notliked by many, as no one likes to besingled out. 28. The Corona 29. The corona is a hand gesture that is carried out bypointing the index and pinkie finger upwards and thetwo middle fingers and thumb curled towards the palm.This hand gesture is considered as the symbol of thedevil in many cultures. The two pointing fingers indicatethe horns of the Devil. This symbol is used theUniversity of Texas to symbolize the Longhorn, theiruniversity mascot. The corona is also widely used byrock stars in as a positive hand gesture. This is also oneof the good hand gestures in different cultures likeBuddhism and Hinduism. This gestures means theKarana Mudra used to dispel the evil. In theMediterranean, it an old symbol that means cuckold,that is, your wife is cheating on you. 30. The Fig 31. The fig is a gesture that is indicated by a fist.The thumb is seen poking out of the indexand middle fingers. This gesture is known asmano fico or fig hand in Roman. This is oneof the good hand gestures, as it indicatesgood luck and fertility and a way to ward offthe evil eye. However, the fig is considered agesture that mimics the female vulva inItalian. Thus, this is a very offensive gestureto the Italians and Turks. If this gesture iscarried out by a person of Asian origin, itroughly translates as screw you. 32. Clenched Fist 33. One of the aggressive hand gesturesis the clenched fist. This means one istrying to pick up a fight or trying towarn the opposite person to back off.In some militant groups, a clenchedfist is used as a sign of defiance. InAsian countries, a clenched fist willsurely land you into a fist fight. 34. The Finger 35. The FingerOne of the most offensive and rudehand gestures around the world is thefinger. The middle finger-pointingupwards is considered as an obscenegesture. In some Mediterranean andArab countries, holding the indexfinger instead of the middle finger,implies the same obscene gesture. 36. Conclusion This was some information related to themeanings of gestures in differentcultures. You should avoid using certaingestures in countries whose cultures arenew to you. You do not want to offendanyone or anything in a new land thatmay put you in a soup. While youresearch some information related totravel tips, be sure you also learnsomething about the body languagegestures too. 37. Thank You......
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