• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

The discipline of communication has grown in popularity from the time professors of journalism and speech decided, in the mid-1960s, that the term “communication” was an excellent general descriptor for the theory and research that each group aspired to create.  Over time, the two groups grew closer and recognized significant overlap in their theoretical and research interests, but there were also differences in their traditions that kept them apart.  While both groups agreed that communication is a practical discipline, journalism professors focused a great deal of their attention on the education of media professionals.  Speech professors, on the other hand, often were more oriented to the liberal arts and valued the fact that communication could be approached from a variety of traditions, including the arts, ...


Without friends, no one would want to live, even if he had all other goods.


The modern study of friendships has roots in social psychology, sociology, and communication, with influence from rhetorical studies and interpersonal communication. This chapter can only briefly overview this vast literature. We begin by tracing ideas of friendship through history and then discuss its nature and functions. This is followed by an overview of theories of friendship development, maintenance, and dissolution. Also included is a brief discussion of methods used to research friendships.

Friendship in Time
Early Ideas about Friendship

Friendship is something we all know a little about, via “common sense,” and may not seem deserving of the philosophical contemplation or rigorous research it has received in the past 2000 years. However, Aristotle ...

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