The third dimension of relationship level meaning is

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The third dimension of relationship-level meaning is power. We use nonverbal behaviors to assert dominance and to negotiate for status and influence ( Remland, 2000 ). Given what we have learned about gender socialization, it is not surprising that men generally assume greater amounts of space than women and use greater volume and more forceful gestures to assert themselves ( Hall, 1987 ; Leathers, 1986; Major, Schmidlin, & Williams, 1990 ). Status also affects tendencies to communicate power nonverbally. The prerogative to touch another reflects power, so people with power tend to touch those with less power. For instance, bosses touch secretaries far more often than secretaries touch bosses ( Hall, Coats, & Smith-LeBeau, 2004 ; Spain, 1992). Time is also linked to people's status. People who are considered important can keep others waiting. How often have you waited for your appointment at a doctor's office? People with high status can also be late to appointments and events without risking serious repercussions. Yet, if someone with lower power is late, she or he may suffer disapproval, penalties, or cancellation of the appointment. Last summer, I had an internship with a big accounting firm in Washington, and space really told the story on status. Interns like me worked in two large rooms on the first floor with partitions to separate our desks. New employees worked on the second floor in little cubicles. The higher up you were in the hierarchy of the firm, the higher up your office was—literally. I mean, the president and vice presidents—six of them—had the whole top floor, while there were 40 or more interns crowded onto my floor. JERRY As Jerry's observations indicate, space can express power relations. People who have power usually have more space than those who have little or no power. Most executives have large, spacious offices, whereas their secretaries often have smaller offices or workstations. As people move up the organizational ladder, they tend to have larger offices. Homes also reflect power differences among family members. Adults usually have more space than children, and men more often than women have their own rooms, chairs, or other special spaces. Responsiveness, liking, and power are dimensions of relationship-level meanings that are often expressed through nonverbal communication. Nonverbal Communication Reflects and Expresses Cultural Values
Like verbal communication, nonverbal patterns reflect specific cultures ( Guerro & Farinelli, 2009 ). This implies that most nonverbal behavior is not instinctive but learned in the process of being socialized within a particular culture. Have you ever seen the bumper sticker “If you can read this, you're too close”? That slogan proclaims North Americans' fierce territoriality. We prize private space, and we resent—and sometimes fight—anyone who trespasses on what we consider our turf. In other cultures—called high- contact cultures—people are less territorial. For instance, many Brazilians stand close together in shops, buses, and elevators, and when they bump into one another, they don't apologize or draw back ( Andersen et. al, 2002

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