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 ***** 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 to contribute to a successful soci*****l, private and work life, ***** ***** is a ***** factor in creating a positive environmental setting.

Why We Need Privacy

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

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

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

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

When people purposely invade other ********** privacy, the situation *****ten involves negative consequences for both parties. Felipe ***** Sommer (1966) conducted a field experiment at a 1,500 bed mental institution in which a stranger approached l***** patients at a d*****tance of six inches and sat down. If the participant attempted to move away, ***** ***** moved so as to maintain a c*****ose *****. The majority of the group showed signs ***** discom*****t and many got up and left.

***** a separate experiment by Felipe and Sommer (1966), female students were *****ing at a large table with six chairs on either side of the table, with at least two empty ***** on either side ***** each subject, and one opposite. ********** were several *****al conditions, including:

***** experimenter s***** next to the ***** participant and ***** hi***** chair nearer ***** hers (close).

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

Sat three seats away (distant).

Sat ***** across ***** her (control).

The *****s of t*****s study were:

***** within 10 minutes

Still working after half-hour






***** 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 alone;

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

Reserve: a psychological barrier against intrusion, allowing people to be ***** ***** group situations.



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