Magazine article Insight on the News

Finding the Truth Behind the Lies. (for the People)

Magazine article Insight on the News

Finding the Truth Behind the Lies. (for the People)

Article excerpt

A recent study conducted by the University of Connecticut which found that the average American lies about 26 times every day so intrigued writer Tim Clark that he decided he wanted to talk "with a number of people whose jobs require them to sift fact from fiction," which he did. Clark sought out people whose job it is to tell when others stray from the truth--people such as police detectives and school headmistresses--and then wrote up his findings for the The Old Farmer's Almanac 2003.

Here's what the professionals told Clark to look for when detecting someone in a lie:

* Sworn oaths, especially when offered lavishly. "So be on your guard if a person swears on his mother's grave, on his children's lives," warns Clark. For the people understands: It's the sort of thing Shakespeare had in mind when he cast suspicion on anyone who "doth protest too much."

* Peculiar body language. Here the advice gets specific: "Experts on body language contend that when people touch their face, especially the area between the nose and the upper lip, they are being untruthful." They may be trying to cover their mouths in an unconscious effort to hide the lie, the experts contend. …

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