New Directions in Interpersonal Communication Research

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Sandi W. Smith, Steven R. Wilson
SAGE, 2010 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 339 pages
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"New Directions offers the best graduate/professional level introduction to the field of interpersonal communication currently available. It is compact, accessible, and authoritative."
—Mac Parks, Journal of Communication

Presenting today’s cutting-edge interpersonal communication research and reflecting on the changes that have occurred over the past three decades, New Directions in Interpersonal Communication Research is relevant and useful to a broad audience, from advanced undergraduate students to the most experienced researchers in the area. By telling the “stories” of research, this volume’s contributors avoid the dry, encyclopedic style that is typical of chapters in handbooks. This new collection showcases the vital, collaborative, and interdisciplinary interpersonal communication research that is being conducted today. Editors Sandi W. Smith and Steven R. Wilson bring together a combination of established and newer scholars, as well as “boundary spanners”—those who are applying interpersonal theories and concepts to areas such as family, health, intercultural, organizational, and mediated communication—to illustrate the wealth and breadth of this area of study and research. Each chapter has clear applied value with an emphasis on doing theoretically driven work that has implications for social issues and problems.

Key Features

  • Offers a broad overview of interpersonal communication as an area of study, situating it historically, discussing advances in theory as well as application, and including a broad range of metatheoretical perspectives
  • Traces evolving trends during the past 30 years that have shaped the study of interpersonal communication and continue to make it relevant, including issues about the larger society (such as globalization and technology), about the communication discipline (such as fractionalization), and about interpersonal communication in particular (such as a focus on “darker” topics)
  • Includes topics that range from evolutionary and dialectical perspectives on interpersonal communication, to uncertainty and turbulence in interpersonal relationships, to comforting and destructive patterns of communication
  • Illustrates how interpersonal communication research can be applied to such diverse topics as information management and privacy, family adaptation to medical diagnoses, and how writing blogs affects self-esteem
  • Tells the background stories of contributors’ research programs, including why the topic matters, what they found, where their work is going, and lessons learned

New Directions in Interpersonal Communication Research is intended as a core text for graduate and upper-level undergraduate courses in Interpersonal Communication, Relational Communication, and Communication Theory.

 

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Contents

III
1
IV
27
V
48
VI
69
VII
94
VIII
115
IX
135
X
159
XIII
221
XIV
245
XV
264
XVI
285
XVII
305
XVIII
317
XIX
331
XX
333

XI
180
XII
201

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About the author (2010)

Sandi W. Smith (Ph.D., University of Southern California) is Professor in the Department of Communication at Michigan State University, where she teaches courses in persuasion, communication theory, and interpersonal communication, and Director of the Health and Risk Communication Center. Her research interests parallel these course topics, and her research has been funded by foundations and government agencies such as the Kaiser Family Foundation, the Fetzer Institute, the U. S. Department of Education, and the National Cancer Institute. In specific, she has focused her research on the impact of memorable messages received from important others on health behaviors; persuading people to carry signed and witnessed organ donor cards and to engage in family discussion about their decisions related to organ donation; encouraging college students to consume alcohol moderately, if at all; and the portrayal of interpersonal relationships on television. Among her more than sixty publications are articles that appeared in Communication Monographs, Human Communication Research, Health Communication, Journal of Health Communication, Journal of Communication, and the Journal of Applied Communication Research, among others. She is active in the National Communication Association and the International Communication Association where she served as Chair of the Interpersonal Communication Division. She has received honors for her teaching and research from student groups, professional associations, and the universities at which she has worked. In 2007, she was honored with the Distinguished Faculty Award at Michigan State University, and in 2008 she received the B. Aubrey Fisher Mentorship Award from ICA.

Steven R. Wilson (Ph.D., Purdue University) is Professor in the Department of Communication at Purdue University. He also has been a faculty member at Michigan State, Northern Illinois, and Northwestern Universities. His research and teaching focus on interpersonal communication, social influence, and aggression/conflict. He is the author of Seeking and Resisting Compliance: Why Individuals Say What They Do When Trying to Influence Others (Sage, 2002), for which he received the Gerald R. Miller book award from the National Communication Association’s interpersonal communication division in 2005. He also has published more than 50 articles and chapters in communication journals such as Communication Monographs, Communication Research, and Human Communication Research, interdisciplinary journals such as Child Abuse & Neglect, Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, and Journal of Language and Social Psychology, and edited volumes such as the Handbook of Communication and Social Interaction Skills and the Handbook of Communication Science (2nd ed.). His recent research explores patterns of parent-child interaction in families at risk for child maltreatment as well as patterns associated with children’s school readiness (funded by the Lilly Endowment). He is active in both the National Communication Association and the International Communication Association, and has served as chair of the interpersonal communication division for both associations. From 2001-2003, he served as one of five associate editors of the interdisciplinary journal Personal Relationships. In 2008, he was honored with the Bernard Brommel Award for Outstanding Scholarship or Distinguished Service in Family Communication from NCA.

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