Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Week 7 - Proxemics and Chronemics

2). Explain proxemics and chronemics. Are there universal rules for all cultures regarding these concepts? Give personal examples if possible. Give examples of personal experience in other cultures regarding these two concepts.

In Harris and Sherblom’s text who mention, “Chronemics is the study of time” (Harris/Sherblom 123). In this statement, we understand chronenmics means time that is one of the important rules in small group discussion. In order to strengthen this rule, Harris and Sherblom also say, “In our culture, time is money. Small group organized in this context must be sensitive to the time-based expectations of many of their members and of the organizations within which they operate” (Harris/Sherblom 123-124). In these sentences, the authors completely reveal time is the important issue to operate in small group. In addition, we also understand time is related to punctuality. Generally, I agree with Harris and Sherblom’s expressions because the time and punctuality are the musts that the team members should comply with these particular rules in the meeting.

Luckily, the members working for my last project of “Group Facilitation” were very punctual when we had a meeting. Literally, all of them understood the time played the important role in group discussion. Before we had the meeting, I also updated our status and schedule by sending the emails to remind them that some members would leave earlier to go back to work or to class. Under this issue, the discussion of the project ended within our schedule. Clearly, we have seen the punctuality that also depends on the collaboration in small group. More importantly, the punctuality is the humanity because we understand that the time is money and would not be coming back again.

The proxemics means space. In Harris and Sherblom’s text who say,”How we structure, use and are affected by space in our interactions with others” (Harper, Wiens, & Matarazzo, 1978, p.xii) constitutes proxemics” (Harris/Sherblom 122). In this statement, the authors express that space plays the important role in the interaction. For example, in the meeting of an organization, we can see the “CEO” always has his or her own seat in the middle of the rectangular or round table that completely demonstrates the important position in the organization. In order to support his or her position, the rest of the staffs sit next to the CEO depending on their levels and positions in the company. Under this issue, we have known the space completely shown the hierarchy power in an organization. In Harris and Sherblom also mention, “More powerful people have freer use of the space around them than do less powerful individuals” (Harris and Sherblom 122). In this statement, we understand larger and lesser power are absolutely related to the space in groups and individuals' interaction.

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