The role of conversational hand gestures in a narrative task

Jacobs, Naomi and Garnham, Alan (2007) The role of conversational hand gestures in a narrative task. Journal of Memory and Language, 56 (2). pp. 291-303. ISSN 0749-596X

Full text not available from this repository.


The primary functional role of conversational hand gestures in narrative discourse is disputed. A novel experimental technique investigated whether gestures function primarily to aid speech production by the speaker, or communication to the listener. The experiment involved repeated narration of a cartoon story or stories to a single or multiple listeners. The pattern of results matched that predicted by the communication hypothesis. In a second experiment, the effects of attention in the listener were investigated. Significant differences were found in gesture production when narrating to attentive versus inattentive listeners. These results support the theory that during a narrative task gestures are produced primarily for the benefit of the listener. Our technique can readily be generalized to other tasks and contexts. (C) 2006 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Journal of Memory and Language
Uncontrolled Keywords:
ID Code:
Deposited By:
Deposited On:
27 Jan 2020 09:45
Last Modified:
03 May 2022 02:47