Offering insights from a Who's Who of scholars in interpersonal communication

“A highly beneficial contribution to the field with chapters that are clear and concise and illuminate the interesting and important aspects of interpersonal communication. With each chapter students are informed about the components of the theory and are also provided with examples that they can relate to, which really brings these theories to life.”

—René Dailey, University of Texas at Austin

“I love this book for its insight, organization, and inclusiveness. I like that the authors use specific examples and then apply their theory to the examples for illustration—this is how students begin to learn how to use and understand theories. What an accessible, thorough, and user-friendly book.”

—Maureen P. Keeley, Texas State University-San Marcos

Engaging Theories in Interpersonal Communication: Multiple Perspectives highlights theories used to guide interpersonal communication research, featuring chapters written by leading scholars of interpersonal communication. Presenting both classic and cutting-edge issues, the book organizes theories into three clusters—theories that are individually-centered; theories that are focused on discourse and interaction processes; and theories that examine how communication functions in personal relationships.

Key Features:

Presents chapters written by the scholars who developed the theories or who use the theories extensively in their own research; Begins with an overview chapter written by the editors that lays out their perspective on theory and the current landscape of theory in interpersonal communication; Offers a parallel organizational structure in all chapters to ease comparison across theories; Includes overviews provided by the editors to help readers integrate and digest the multiple theories covered in the volume

Intended Audience:

Upper-level undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in such courses Applied Communication, Communication Theory, Communication Research, Interpersonal Communication, Personal Relationships, and Relational Communication in the fields of speech and human communication, family studies, and social psychology.

Individually-Centered Theories of Interpersonal Communication
Individually-centered theories of interpersonal communication

The contributors to Part I of this book address theories that hold prominence in understanding how individuals plan, produce, and process interpersonal communication messages. Theories in this section of the book are based on the basic assumption that individual cognitive activity is the heart of the communication process—both in producing and in processing messages. All but one of the theories is homegrown—that is, developed by scholars who identify professionally with the communication studies discipline. The one exception is the family of attribution theories, developed in the discipline of psychology.

The majority of theories in this section are positioned in the post-positivistic meta-theoretical tradition. The contributors flag this tradition using many terms, including

  • logical-empirical,
  • scientific,
  • realism,
  • prediction,
  • causal explanation, and
  • generalization.

In general, the theories ...

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