Teasing has been of primary importance in research on socialization because of its ambiguity both as a means to strengthen solidarity through the creation of intimacy, or through enforcement of conformity to in-group behavior, whether it be within the family, the classroom, or other social categories. Among the important features of a tease is that the target be a present participant in the conversation; thus, teasing is a phenomenon that emerges in interaction, playing with the meaning and using the context and the interpersonal knowledge participants have of each other to create a double-edged sword that can both bond and bite. Teasing has been seen as a continuum that goes from bullying to banter. There is, however, a debate in the literature on the biting ...

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