Publication details [#65654]

McNeill, David. 2018. Recurrent gestures. How the mental reflects the social. Gesture 17 (2) : 229–244.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Place, Publisher
John Benjamins
Journal DOI


Using recurrent gestures as the model, this essay considers how an inside-looking-out view of speech-gesture production reflects the interactive-social exterior. The inside view may appear to ignore the social context of speaking and gesture, but this is far from the truth. What an exterior view sees as important appears in the interior but in a different way. The difference leads to misunderstandings of the interior view and what it does. It is not a substitute for the exterior. It is the interior reflecting the social exterior and shaping it to fit its own demands. Topics are: recurrent gestures; gesture-speech co-expressivity; expunged real-world goals; “in-betweenness”; phenomenological “inhabitance” and material carriers; metaphoricity and imagery; social deixis and social relations; realizations of the self; world-views; and lastly the want of mutual outside and inside intellectual perceptions and what can be done about it. Keywords: recurrent gestures, mental interior, social exterior