A scream, shout, holler, vociferation, or yell is a loud human audio vocalization in which the person makes a loud cry by expelling air from the lungs.


These exclamations may be motivated by extreme emotion such as fear, excitement, suprise,or pain.


When human beings are taken over by extreme fear they may scream for various and sometimes intermingled reasons. These reasons include scaring away an attacker or calling attention to themselves for help. Screaming as a result of fear from a practical joke may be cause for embarrassment.


When people are overcome by joy, such as at an encounter with someone whom they long to encounter such as their romantic interest or family member or friend who has been away, they may exclaim with a scream their excitement for this occasion. People often scream out of joy when something happy has happened to them, like winning a prize. This is usually because of surprise or intense emotion.


When people suffer from injuries which are very painful such as broken bones or gun shot wounds, they often scream in pain or surprise. This may be a vocalization used to deal with the shock of the incident or perhaps an evolutionary adaptation used to warn others of danger.


When people are not expecting something and it comes suddenly they are surprised. If someone comes up to you and jumps on you or talks in your ear when you do not know they are going to do this, most of the people scream in surprise or shock



Some people, when arguing begin to raise their voices to the point that they are screaming at each other in anger while continuing their debate exchange. Terminology includes "shouting match".


Drill instructors frequently use this tactic and its associated fear and intimidation to train recruits whilst fostering obedience and expedience.


The decibel levels of screams may be very high, and this has become an issue in the sport of tennis, particularly with regards to Maria Sharapova's loud tennis grunts which have been measured as high as 101.2 decibels. The human range for screaming in decibels is between 0 and 112.8 which is the world record held by Alan Myatt.The pitch varies depending on the justification for a scream. Also, some music genres feature vocalists who scream rather than sing. This is found in metal, emo, screamo, hardcore, and other genres. The purpose of screaming in this music is sometimes to express emotion more strongly.

Popular Culture

The Wilhelm scream is film's most familiar scream and has been edited into many movies since 1951.

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