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New Directions in Interpersonal Communication Research

New Directions in Interpersonal Communication Research

Edited by:

February 2009 | 360 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

"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.

Michael E. Roloff
Foreword: Commentary on New Directions in Interpersonal Communication
Sandi W. Smith and Steven R. Wilson
1. Evolving Trends in Interpersonal Communication Research
Ascan F. Koerner and Kory Floyd
2. Evolutionary Perspectives on Interpersonal Relationships
Leslie A. Baxter and Dawn O. Braithwaite
3. Relational Dialectics Theory, Applied
Leanne K. Knobloch
4. Relational Uncertainty and Interpersonal Communication
Walid A. Afifi
5. Uncertainty and Information Management in Interpersonal Contexts
Denise Haunani Solomon, Kirsten M. Weber, and Keli Ryan Steuber
6. Turbulence in Relational Transitions
Karen K. Myers
7. Workplace Relationships and Membership Negotiation
Brant R. Burleson
8. Explaining Recipient Responses to Supportive Messages: Development and Tests of a Dual-Process Theory
John P. Caughlin and Allison M. Scott
9. Toward a Communication Theory of the Demand/Withdraw Pattern of Interaction in Interpersonal Relationships
Judee K. Burgoon and Timothy R. Levine
10. Advances in Deception Detection
Anita L. Vangelisti and Alexa D. Hampel
11. Hurtful Communication: Current Research and Future Directions
Kristine L. Fitch
12. Culture and Interpersonal Relationships
Joseph B. Walther and Artemio Ramirez, Jr.
13. New Technologies and New Directions in Online Relating
Stacy L. Smith and Amy Granados
14. Interpersonal Relationships on Television: A Look at Three Key Attributes

Much of the success of New Directions stems from the editors’ selection of strong contributors. These are definitely the people to be reading. Perhaps more important, the editors asked contributors to tell the story of their research by addressing basic questions on the origins of their work, the methods they used, their most important findings and challenges, and the directions they and other might take the work in the future. The result is a book that is at once more engaging than recent encyclopedias and handbooks and more substantive than recent textbooks surveying theories of interpersonal communication. In my view New Directions offers the best graduate/professional level introduction to the field of interpersonal communication currently available. It is compact, accessible, and authoritative.

Journal of Communication

"Books, particularly edited volumes, rarely succeed in expressing either a sense of history or a clear vision of the discipline’s leading edge. New Directions in Interpersonal Communication Research, succeeds at both."

Malcolm Parks
University of Washington

Good supplemental text for upper-division interpersonal course.

Dr Erina MacGeorge
Communication Arts Sci Dept, Pennsylvania State University
August 22, 2014

I found the book very useful to recommend to my students because it gives an overview and analysis of the past and current research in interpersonal communication. Students who are taking Interpersonal Communication courses may not be aware of the rich background in research as well of the on-going interdisciplinary studies in this field. The chapters discuss relevant topics to undergraduate students, such as relational, media and cultural aspects in interpersonal communication. The authors also suggest ideas for further research and apply theory to more specific interpersonal situations. This book is an in-depth, yet at the same very practical and applicable text to be used in the classroom.

Mrs Jurgita Babarskiene
Social Sciences, LCC International University
January 14, 2012

Sections of this book will be very useful for my students in the module Communication and Social Interaction. Will highly likely remain as recommended reading for the revalidated module from 2012 onwards

Dr Paul Hutchings
Centre for Psychology and Counselling, Swansea Metropolitan University
June 20, 2011

A useful source of information on aspects of interpersonal communication that my students would benefit from considering

Mr Darren Prince
Nursing , Glamorgan University
May 13, 2010

Although I found one or two chapters to be interesting, the book was too specific for a general course of social psychology.

Mrs Karla Felix
Psychology Dept, Brooklyn College
March 1, 2010

Research reviewed was most current and is thoughtfully synthesized. Text is accessible to upper-level undergrads as well as grad students.

Dr Jayson Dibble
Speech Dept, University of Hawaii - Manoa
February 8, 2010

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