Tue, Jul 30, 2013 - Page 10 News List

Clapping reveals applause is a ‘social contagion’
鼓掌行為顯露喝采是一種「社會傳染」現象

Cuban musician Bebo Valdes claps during his concert in San Sebastian, Spain on July 26, 2003.
二○○三年七月二十六日,古巴音樂家貝波‧瓦地斯在西班牙聖賽巴斯提安舉行的個人音樂會上鼓掌。

Photo: AFP
照片:法新社

The quality of a performance does not drive the amount of applause an audience gives, a study suggests.

Instead scientists have found that clapping is contagious, and the length of an ovation is influenced by how other members of the crowd behave.

They say it takes a few people to start clapping for applause to spread through a group, and then just one or two individuals to stop for it to die out.

Lead author Richard Mann, from the University of Uppsala, said:”You can get quite different lengths of applause — even if you have the same quality of performance. This is purely coming from the dynamics of the people in the crowd.”

However, the performance that had been witnessed — no matter how brilliant — had little effect on the duration of the noisy acclaim.

The scientists believe that clapping is a form of “social contagion,” which reveals how ideas and actions gain and lose momentum.

Studying this, they say, could shed light on other areas, such as how trends come in and go out of fashion or how ideas spread on the Internet.

(Liberty Times)

一份研究認為,一場表演的好壞,並非驅使觀眾給予喝采多寡的原因。

反而,科學家發現,掌聲是有感染性的,喝采的長短受觀眾群中其他人如何反應影響。

他們說,先有幾個人開始鼓掌,讓掌聲在一個群體中擴散,然後只要一或兩人停下來,掌聲就會漸漸停止。

研究報告主要作者、烏普薩拉大學的李察.曼恩說:「就算表演品質一樣,也可能獲得相當不同長度的掌聲。這純粹出自於群體中人們的動態狀況。」

但呈現出來的表演,不管多精采,都對喝采聲長短沒什麼影響。

科學家相信,鼓掌是一種形式的「社會傳染」,透露出想法和行動如何取得和失去動能。

他們說,研究這個能夠了解其他領域,如流行趨勢如何開始風行、退流行,或者各種想法怎麼在網路上散播。

(自由時報/翻譯:管淑平)

TODAY’S WORDS 今日單字

1. die out v. phr.

漸漸停止;滅絕 (jian4 jian4 ting2 zhi3; mie4 jue2)

例: Endangered species are dying out at an alarming rate.

(瀕臨絕種物種正以驚人速度滅絕。)

2. acclaim n.

喝采;讚揚 (he4 cai3; zan4 yang2)

例: The artist’s latest works received huge acclaim.

(這名藝術家的最新作品受到極大的讚揚。)

3. go out of fashion v. phr.

退流行;過時 (tui4 liu2 xing2; guo4 shi2)

例: The style of this dress went out of fashion many years ago.

(這件洋裝的款式好幾年前就過時了。)


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