Haptics

Report
Haptics
Touch is the most intimate form of
communication
Metaphors associated with touch
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keeping in touch.
not being in touch
with reality.
a touching gesture.
using the “soft touch”
on someone
the importance of touch
“Touch
has the power to repel, disgust, insult, threaten,
console, reassure, love, and arouse” (Andersen, 2008)
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brush
caress
clinch
cuddle
embrace
grope
handshake
high five
hit
hold
hug
feel
fondle
kiss
knuckle bump
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nibble
pat
pinch
poke
prod
push
reach around
rub
scratch
shove
slap
spank
squeeze
stroke
tickle
functions of touch
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Greeting rituals
Comfort, reassurance
Positive or negative
affect
Communicating status,
power
Conveying the level of
intimacy
touch in infancy
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Touch is the first sense
humans develop.
Touch is essential for proper
emotional and psychological
development.
Monkeys raised in isolation
from their mothers were
maladjusted (Harlow, 1958)
Preemies who are touched
grow faster.
In orphanages, untouched
children die of merasmus
(wasting away) (Montagu,
1978)
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Tactile stimulation in the
first years of live is
necessary for brain
development (Gerhart,
2004; Perry, 2002)
context is key
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The communication
context determines the
meaning of touch.
◦ pat on the back
 reassuring or
condescending?
◦ punch in the arm
 Playful or aggressive?
◦ slap on the butt in sports
 Okay on the field, not okay
in the locker room.
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Culture shapes the
meaning assigned to
touch
◦ two males holding
hands
◦ shaking hands with the
left hand
◦ a male shaking a
woman’s hand
Who touches whom?
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In public places, males
initiate more touch than
females (Hertenstein,
Verkemp, et al., 2006)
In private settings,
women initiate touch
more often (Major et
al., 1990)
Women use more nonhand touches than men
(body and leg touches).
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Men are more likely
to initiate touch early
in a relationship
Women are more
likely to initiate touch
in marriages
More about who touches whom
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Overweight people
◦ receive fewer touches (Holmes,
2005)
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People with disabilities
◦ Touching a person’s wheelchair or
other assistive device is
inappropriate.
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Touch avoiders
◦ Some people are apprehensive
about touching and being touched
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Touch illiterates
◦ Some people lack awareness of
social norms governing touch
Appropriate or inappropriate?
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Male Touchers
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male friend
boss
father
teacher
uncle
Female Touchers
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female friend
boss
mother
teacher
aunt
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Female Touchees
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arm
shoulder
forearm
knee
face
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arm
shoulder
forearm
knee
face
Male Touchees
The handshake
shake it, don’t break it
types of handshakes
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the dead fish
the bone crusher
lady fingers
the swoop in
the stiff arm
the two-hander
the pump handle
the saw
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Alternatives
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high five
knuckle bump
double-handed
cheek kiss
The “correct” Western handshake
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Avoid sweaty palms
(handkerchief)
Stand up, walk around objects
Look at the person, not at their
hand
Make eye contact, smile
Save the doubleDon’t shake with your left hand hander for the U.N.
Offer a firm shake, not
overpowering
Use full palm to palm contact
Make full palm-to-palm contact
Remember the person’s
name
Are you rescuing a
Avoid vice grips
princess or
shaking hands?
No thumbwrestling, please
Status, power and touch
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People with higher status tend to touch more
than those with low status (Henley, 1973)
88% of handshakes, in one study, were
initiated by managers
In organizational settings, superiors touch
subordinates more than subordinates touch
superiors (Remland, 1981).
Higher status persons have more touch
privilege than low status persons (Andersen,
2008)
exerting dominance, control
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An airline passenger claims the armrest by
bumping another passenger’s arm off.
A standing manager places both hands on a
seated employee’s shoulders while saying,
“You’re going to have that report for me by
the end of the day, right?”
A boyfriend puts his arm around his girlfriend
and pulls her in closer to him to signal
possessiveness.
Touching people’s possessions—grabbing
their cell phone or iPod
Touch and compliance gaining
“Phone booth” study. A
confederate intentionally left a
coin in a phone booth for
another person to find.
 No touch condition: When the
person found the coin, the
confederate approached him/her
and said “Did you happen to
seem my coin in that phone
booth? I need it to make
another call?”
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◦ 23% compliance
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Touch condition: the
confederate touched the person
lightly on the elbow for 1-3
seconds and asked if they found
the coin.
◦ 68% compliance
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Cultural differences in
replicating the phone booth
study: Touch was most
effective in low-touch
cultures:
22% compliance for Italians
50% compliance for French
72% compliance for
Australians
70% compliance for English
85% compliance for
Germans
Touch and compliance gaining
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Food servers and
compliance gaining
Retail sales
Bystanders and helping
behavior
Incidental touch in a library
Touch and requests for
donations
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Guidelines
make the touch light and
brief
◦ A count of “one Mississippi.”
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look for signs of
discomfort
◦ moving farther away,
crossing arms, buttoning
coat
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limit contact to the
shoulder, forearm, elbow,
or back.
Don’t touch bare
shoulders or backs

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