JNB Volume 2 Issue 3 Spring 1978

Patterson, Arthur H. 1978. Territorial behavior and fear of crime in the elderly. Journal of Nonverbal Behavior 2(3): 131-144.

[...] a study by Schooler (1970) found that the elderly are more concerned with their safety than with maintaining social interaction. (Patterson 1978: 132)
Apparently when you're old you are less concerned with social interaction than you are of your personal safety. I wonder if fear of crime overrides sociability to such a degree that it can be considered as a cause for unsociability.
Another explanation of the problem is offered by Christian (Note 1). He feels that the elderly, many of whom live alone, are physically and socially vulnerable. This vulnerability leads to a decrease in social activity and an increase in victimization and fear of crime. Lebowitz (1975) has also found that those elderly who live alone fear crime more than those who do not live alone. (Patterson 1978: 132)
It does seem to be so. If you feel vulnerable then you are obviously also less outgoing.
Neugarten and associates (1964) have described this as the shift to less active mastery in later years. Similarly, this has been viewed as a shift from active to passive behavior and from aggression to cooperation (Clark, 1967) and as a movement from competitive behavior to cooperation and from aggressive behavior to passivity (Riley, 1969). (Patterson 1978: 133)
This is a known factor in aging: the loss of ability (here active mastery). It does demand a degree of agility and aggressiveness to go out and socialize.
Lawton et al. (1976) have discussed the lack of environmental control, which can partially account for the crime problem in the elderly. They note such problems among the elderly as (1) limits in their visual and auditory acuity, which results in potential threats going unrecognized; (2) physical limits to the actions that they can take, such as running to avoid assault; and (3) social isolation and economic deprivation, which lead to vulnerability. (Patterson 1978: 133)
I recall my old social studies teacher who avoided the city center because it was too dangerous for her - at least that's what she thought. I, too, was afraid of the city center when I was 16. After that not so much, but it's probably because now I'm more familiar with the city and also I don't go out that much myself, so I don't come across dangerous situations as much. My own problems are actually quite similar. Perhaps not the first one, but I do avoid going out because of my health and also the third aspect (no point going out when you don't have beer money or friends at hand to hang out with).
A 1973 Gallup poll indicated that many people over 50 years of age were afraid to leave their homes at night. (Patterson 1978: 133)
As the saying goes: nothing good ever happens after 2 am. In older times (the beginning of the previous century) the rules of civil conduct didn't actually apply after 2 am.
Newman (1972) has stated that crime deterrence results from the capacity of the designed environment to create zones of territorial influence that the inhabitants will survey and defend. The research on territoriality generally supports this concept. (Patterson 1978: 134)
Neighbourhood watch seems to be an intentional effort to create such a zone, although what they have in mind here is probably a naturalistic zone of such surveillance and defence.

Baum, Andrew; Karen Mapp and Glenn E. Davis 1978. Determinants of residential group development and social control. Journal of Nonverbal Behavior 2(3): 145-160.

Clearly, architectural design can influence mood and behavior at a number of levels, including the development of social groupings and the evolution of norms governing the use of space. (Baum, Mapp & Davis 1978: 146)
It would be interesting to find out whether the evolution of these norms are influenced by culture and to what degree.
[...] research exploring the effects of architecturally derived group size suggests that interior designs that cluster relatively large groups of residents around common living space result in loss of regulatory control of social contact and are associated with crowding stress (e.g., Baum & Valins, 1977). (Baum, Mapp & Davis 1978: 146)
This could be framed in terms of loss of control over the phatic function, that is, loss of control over communication channels.
Simply defined, "semiprivate space" is that space beyond an individual's primary or private territory that, due to frequent use by the individual and local others, assumes many of the characteristics of group territory. The suitability of a given public space is determined by a variety of factors specific to each community. (Baum, Mapp & Davis 1978: 147)
Recently a table and four chairs appeared in our communal kitchen. It seems to function as a semiprivate space, although I have yet to see actually use it.
One of these end-hall exits in each building was closer to campus areas than the others; as a result, for half of the residents in the long-corridor dormitories and two-thirds of those in short-corridor housing, they could exit close to campus by walking through the floor's hallway or exit nearby and walk outside. (Baum, Mapp & Davis 1978: 154)
In my dormitory, one exit on my side of the building is closer to the city center while the exit on the other side of the building is closer to the store across the street. When I go to the store with bad weather I exit from the other side of the building, while most residents on that side of the building seem reluctant to cross corridor on my side of the building to exit closer to the city center. It may be because the other corridor is longer and thus more impersonal while my corridor is shorter and thus more personal.
Follow-up interviews suggested that the different exiting patterns were associated with short-corridor residents' reluctance to walk through space that they perceived as "belonging" to another group. (Baum, Mapp & Davis 1978: 154)
This is exactly what I mean by a corridor being "personal". My short corridor has more of a feeling of "belonging" to its inhabitants than the long corridor.
Female confederates, who did not live in the dormitories being studied, waited in the hallways and initiated eye contact with residents as they emerged from bedrooms. All observations of resident response were recorded by an experimenter hidden nearby, and all sessions were conducted in early evening hours of weekdays in the first week of May. A total of 40 subjects was examined in each dormitory, half of each sex.
The results of this study confirmed our expectations. While only 10 long-corridor residents returned eye contact, 29 short-corridor residents did so, X2(1) = 18.06, p < .001. Also, whereas only 7 long-corridor subjects smiled at the confederate, 19 short-corridor subjects followed eye contact with a smile, X2(1) = 7.54, p < .01. The related unresponsiveness of long-corridor residents reflects the interpersonal consequences of a relatively anonymous local social environment in which residents do not exert active social control over shared space. When group-derived regulation of interaction does not evolve in shared spaces, as in the long-corridor hallway, these spaces remain public and residents are less likely to respond to someone in that space. Conversely, when social control and interaction loci are congruent, enabling the conversion of public hallway to semiprivate space, as in the short-corridor dormitory, residents are quite responsive to the presence of an unfamiliar other. (Baum, Mapp & Davis 1978: 157)
A similar experiment in my dorm corridor would probably prove the "unresponsiveness" of my neighbours and myself.
When social control is inhibited, as in the long-corridor environments, residents begin to assume unresponsive postures toward others. This coping strategy functions to control an otherwise aversive level of social stimulation and, as evidenced by previous laboratory research with this population, becomes a rather generalized mode of interacting with other people. (Baum, Mapp & Davis 1978: 159)
They suggest (on the basis of "previous laboratory research") that this kind of unresponsiveness in the dorm has an influence on the total communicative pattern of the resident.

Rozelle, Richard M. and James C. Baxter 1978. The interpretation of nonverbal behavior in a role-defined interaction sequence: The police-citizen encounter. Journal of Nonverbal Behavior 2(3): 167-180.

The interpretation of nonverbal behavior during role-defined interactions has generally been limited to such settings as psychotherapy (e.g., Deutsch, 1952; Ekman & Friesen, 1968; Mahl, 1968; Scheflen, 1965) or structured laboratory procedures involving such conditions as deception (e.g., Collett, 1971; McClintock & Hunt, 1974; Mehrabian, 1971) and ingratiation (e.g., Jones, 1964; Rosenfeld, 1966). (Rozelle & Baxter 1978: 167)
This is where Ruesch's role instructions come in handy. Role-defined interactions are not considered at all in Jakobson's model. I'm not even sure if role-defined speech registers are accounted for.
Jones and Nisbett (1972) have pointed out that when people form impressions of each other, an observer has a tendency to overattribute an actor's behavior to his disposition, thus neglecting or underemphasizing situational determinants of the observed actions. This, in turn, may lead to the misinterpretation of an actor's emotions, intentions, and related distinctive characteristics. It would seem that this misinterpretation of behavior should increase to the degree that the observer (1) has minimal information regarding the actor and (2) must make decisions concerning what action to take as a result of the interpretation made. The police-citizen interaction appears to be closely related to these conditions. The police officer usually has minimal or no previous information about the citizen and must rely heavily on both verbal and nonverbal cues observed. This information must be used, in turn, to reach a decision about what action to take as a result of the interaction. (Rozelle & Baxter 1978: 168)
The analyst is in a similar position. Video clips of human behaviour sometimes lacks information about the actors and the analyst has to deduce such information from a limited reserve of behaviour.
Rozelle and Baxter (1975) interviewed 51 experineced metropolitan police officers and discovered consistencies in the interpretation of molecular and molar nonverbal behavioral sequences for inferring numerous qualities about the citizen. Of particular interest was the reliance placed upon such behaviors as gaze aversion and heightened arm, hand, and general body activity as an index of an intention to deceive, presumably out of a sense of guilt. Although this may be the basis for valid interpretation, these same behaviors have been shown to be reliably caused by situational constraints on the interaction process itself, namely, increased spatial proximity of the interactants (Argyle & Dean, 1965; Baxter & Rozelle, 1975; Goldberg, Kiesler, & Collins, 1969). (Rozelle & Baxter 1978: 168)
Molecular and molar here parallel micro and macro. Interpreting gaze aversion and heightened body activity as a sign of deception may be faulty because situational factors my have caused these behaviours. This is where the context of the situation becomes increasingly important.
The control condition was designed to contrast with the experimental condition in as complete a fashion as possible. The citizen spoke less frequently, but for longer periods, maintained more extended eye contact with the policeman and displayed no unusual eye and head activity. Fewer trunk rotations were displayed, and the hands and arms were positioned to the side of the body or "hooked in the pockets" throughout most of the interaction. (Rozelle & Baxter 1978: 170)
That is one cool control group subject.
[...] the high degree of consensus regarding the impressions formed in the present manipulations indicated that systematic interpretation of nonverbal behavior does occur and can possibly lead to inaccurate impressions formed. (Rozelle & Baxter 1978: 179)
Very generally: people do judge nonverbal behaviour ("systematically") and do so with inaccuracy.

Shotland, R. Lance and Michael P. Johnson 1978. Bystander behavior and kinesics: The interaction between the helper and victim. Journal of Nonverbal Behavior 2(3): 181-190.

Argyle and Dean (1965) stated that eye contact serves as a signal that a communication channel is open and that it places a person under "some obligation to interact." Eye contact with the victim thus should increase the probability that a bystander will identify himself as part of an emergeny situation and feel some obligation to act. Eye contact between a victim and a bystander focuses the responsibility to help on the bystander and communicates that the victim desires aid, thereby making social responsibility norms more salient. (Shotland & Johnson 1978: 182)
In such an emergency eye contact is not only phatic but also emotive and conative.
Body orientation appears to be a key variable. The effects of eye contact and sex are only apparent in the front condition. The deindividuation literature suggests that norms, whether of the social responsibility variety or any other, may only be salient and active when a person is identifiable or individuated. The front of a person appears to be a preparatory cue for some type of interaction. In an uncrowded context it is not unusual to respond to a stranger by nodding your head when walking by him; one seems to be prepared for some type of interactio nand as a result acknowledges that the other person is present. The people in the front condition are indiiduated. When a person is not identifiable, the effectiveness of all norms, including the social responsibility norm, are going to be minimally effective (Zimardo, 1969; White, Note 1). When a bystander was facing our victim's back, he was not visible to the victim; hence, norms were not particularly salient for the bystander. (Shotland & Johnson 1978: 188)
I wonder if this is related to manners of execution - why shooting someone at the back of the head is considered inhumane, etc.
In summary, we would conclude that interaction between bystander and victims is an important determinat of helping behavior. In particular nonverbal cues appear to play an important role in the shaping of bystander's reactions to a person in need. (Shotland & Johnson 1978: 189)
Another generality.


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