Essay - Human Need for Privacy Environmental Psychology is the Study of...

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Human Need for Privacy

Environmental psychology is the study of the interaction between the physical world and human behavior. In recent years, the topic of privacy has been a key aspect of this field ***** study, as research reveals that it directly relates to a sense of well being and control. A supportive physical environment has been proven ***** contribute to a successful soci*****l, private ***** work life, and privacy is a ***** f*****ctor in creating a positive environmental setting.

Why We Need *****

There are many theories as to why people need *****. Many psychologists believe that people need to maintain personal space between themselves and others to avoid overstimulation. ********** to Scott (1993), when people ***** too close to one another, they are bombarded with too many social or physical stimuli.

Some *****ers argue ***** people ***** to maintain personal space ***** avoid various stressors associated with very close proximity. This group says that when ***** space is inadequate, ***** have feelings of arousal.

Altman (1975) views personal space as a boundary regulation mechan*****m needed to meet desired levels of ***** and group privacy. According to Altman, ***** is an interpersonal boundary process by which people control interactions with *****.

Through variations in the extent of *****ir private space, people make sure ***** their desired and achieved levels ***** privacy are consistent. If it is impossible ***** control ***** regulate these boundaries so that the desired level of privacy is met, negative effects and coping are the result.

When ***** purposely invade other people's privacy, the s*****uation often involves ***** consequences for both parties. Felipe ***** Sommer (1966) conducted a ***** experiment *****t a 1,500 bed mental institution in which a stranger approached lone patients at a distance of six inches and sat down. If ***** participant attempted to move away, the stranger *****d so ***** to maintain a close proximity. The majority of the group showed signs of discom*****t and many got up and left.

***** a sep*****rate experiment ***** Felipe and Sommer (*****), female students were *****ing at a large table with six chairs on either side of the table, with ***** least two empty chairs on either side of each subject, and one opposite. *****re were several experimental conditions, including:

The experimenter sat next to the ***** participant and moved his chair nearer to hers (close).

Sat ***** seats away from her, leaving ***** chair in between them (distant).

Sat three ***** away (distant).

***** ***** across from her (control).

***** *****s of this study were:

Left within 10 minutes

Still working after half-hour






Privacy Factors

Privacy can be broken down into the following classifications: Kaplan (1982)

Solitude: total visual privacy;

Intimacy: privacy, within a small ***** unit, such as a family at home a*****;

*****: privacy, ***** a social *****, where one is able to observe without feeling observed; people merging with the environment;

*****: a psychological barrier against intrusion, allowing people to be ***** within gro***** situations.



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