Proxemics is the study of the social and physical aspects of an individual’s personal space. It can be conceptualized in terms of our input senses (eyes, ears, and nose), which make judgments regarding the amount of space between ourselves and the persons or things we interact with. However, these judgments are not straightforward. A substantial body of research into proxemics illuminates the almost innumerable factors that inform the interactants’ judgments regarding the personal space of themselves and their interlocutor.

Understanding proxemics in communication requires a complicated dance that embraces the shifting influences of the immediate communicative environment and the larger physical environment in which interaction occurs. The physical environment shapes the communicative interactional space through both fixed and semifixed features. Fixed feature spaces are constrained by ...

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