The Sign Language of the Chinese People

In addition to words, people often use gestures and facial expressions to show their feeling and to exchange information. Body language is also a powerful means of communication.

Most of Chinese people’s gestures are similar to those of other nations, but there are some peculiar ones, to which we should pay special attention. For example,

1, Raising a hand, keeping the palm facing down, and moving the fingers up and down: meaning bye-bye or beckoning somebody over.

2, Thumb-up: indicating excellence or number one.

3, Little finger-up: meaning bad, disappointing, or coming to the last place.

4, Index finger pointing at one’s nose: indicating oneself, or “it is me”.

5, Patting one’s chest: as a gesture of guarantee or reassurance.

6, Giving or receiving with both hands: showing respect, especially between the younger generation and the older generation, the subordinate and the superior.

7, Swaying one hand while keeping the palm facing outward: indicating disagreement, or trying to attract other people’s attention.

8, Finger counting is widely used in China but usually as a confirmation of a spoken number.

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