Making Your Point: The Use of Gestures in Ancient Israel
More than simple narrative embellishment, the descriptions of physical gestures or other body movements by characters in biblical stories are a rich source of cultural information. As is the case with live dialogue, various forms of nonverbal communication both accompany and enliven the scene in a written narrative. They convey emotion, dominance, and social status, and they help to illustrate a position or specific point being made by the dialogue partners. Therefore the use of kinesics and other methods of analyzing nonverbal communication become a valuable interpretative tool for biblical scholars. This study examines categories of nonverbal comunication and provides an annotated survey of their use in biblical narrative.
kinesics, nonverbal communication, gesture, emotion, clothing
Matthews, Victor H. "Making Your Point: The Use of Gestures in Ancient Israel." Biblical Theology Bulletin 42, no. 1 (2012): 18-29.