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How does the frequency and type of gesture usage differ during descriptive tasks between bilingual German-English speakers, relative to their home country?

Efron, D (1942) studied how assimilated groups of bilingual Italian-English and Yiddish-English speakers exhibited similar gesture usage [frequency; space] to each other despite their dissimilar heritages, where immigrant groups showed a contrasting difference in gesture. This presented foundational evidence in cross-cultural and cross-linguistic studies that the language you are predominantly immersed in affects unverbalised communication - regardless of heritage. Furthermore, Nicoladis et al. (2019) proposes the idea of a ‘hybrid gesturer:’ a bilingual person who blends two cultures’ unverbalised communication styles together in both languages. It was suggested that the transfer of gesture from one language to another depended on the culture’s typical use and frequency. This data suggests there could be a different style of gesture and rate between those whose predominant language growing up is German and English respectively. However, it is possible that gesture frequency in English will be lower as it is typically observed as a low-frequency gesture language (Ann Graham and Argyle, 1975). In addition Nicoladis et al. (2018) established that European bilinguals produce slightly more gestures in their native language than in English, reinforcing a potential contrast in outcome of gesture rate during this investigation.
This paper explores the hypothesis that cross-cultural use of spontaneous gesture differs between bilingual German-English speakers, relative to the country they grew up in. The objective is to observe how distinct experiences of two cultures, where either one is surrounded by that country’s dominant language, affects non-verbal communication whilst speaking either language. Two different image-only comic strips were provided as prompts for descriptive discussion in English and another in German.
The results demonstrate a link between speech and gesture use, though a difference in this link between participants. Participant A gestured once during the English conversation (metaphoric) and 5 times in German (regulators). Participant A displayed more referential gesture types than participant B, directly relating to the topic during conversation. Participant B used one iconic gesture in English (depicting a woman’s short hair), 3 deictic gestures in English and 2 in German (pointing to the prop or pulling at clothing). This reinforces previous evidence that European bilinguals use more iconic and deictic gestures in their second language, which Azar, Backus and Özyürek (2019) explains as a method of organising discourse and reduce ‘cognitive load associated with being bilingual.’ Aziz and Nicoladis (2019) suggest that bilingual people gestured more in the language they are not predominantly surrounded by; a form of trying to compensate for verbal communication as the language is not commonly spoken in English communities. This claim is supported as participant B used a higher frequency of metaphoric gestures in German when explaining concepts.
Efron's (1942) example with assimilated groups gesturing more similarly than their immigrant counterparts is reflected in this investigation, whereby participant B gestured more similarly than A. The outcome demonstrates a contrast between the gesture usage in each language and suggests that a bilingual speaker’s predominant culture influences how similarly or dissimilarly they gesture in each language they speak. 

Ann Graham, J. and Argyle, M. (1975) ‘A Cross-Cultural Study of the Communication of Extra-Verbal Meaning by Gesture’, International Journal of Psychology, 10(1), pp. 57–67. doi: 10.1080/00207597508247319. 
Aziz, J. R. and Nicoladis, E. (2019) ‘My French is rusty: Proficiency and bilingual gesture use in a
majority English community’, Bilingualism, 22(4), pp. 826–835. doi: 10.1017/S1366728918000639.
Efron, D. (1942) ‘Gesture and Environment’, The ANNALS of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 220(1), pp. 268–269. doi: 10.1177/000271624222000197.
Nicoladis, E. et al. (2018) ‘Gesture frequency is linked to story-telling style: Evidence from bilinguals’, Language and Cognition, 10(4), pp. 661–664. doi: 10.1017/langcog.2018.25.