Publication details [#53921]

Yang, Ping. 2010. Nonverbal aspects of turn taking in Mandarin Chinese interaction. Chinese Language and Discourse 2 (1) : 99–130.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Language as a subject
Place, Publisher
John Benjamins
Journal DOI


This paper examines the nonverbal aspects of the turn taking system in Mandarin Chinese talk-in-interaction. Based on the audio and video data collected from real conversational settings in Chinese universities, this project uses conversation analysis (CA) theory to analyze how university-educated Mandarin Chinese speakers utilize various nonverbal resources with reference to turn yielding, turn up-taking and turn maintaining strategies to achieve effective interpersonal communication . The research results show that the current speaking party (SP) and listening party (LP) use nonverbal tokens such as hand drop in yielding turns, gaze and touch in taking up turns, and non-gaze, thinking face and finger count in maintaining turns. Understanding of these nonverbal cues employed can help prospective intercultural communicators interact with Mandarin Chinese speakers more effectively and successfully.