The fundamental topoi of relational communication

  • Burgoon J
  • Hale J
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Relational communication has traditionally been conceptualized as operating along two or three dimensions. An elaborated view of relational message themes is presented here. Based on a synthesis of diverse bodies of literature, including anthropological and psychotherapeutic analyses of human behavior, intraspecific displays, measurement of meaning, emotional expression, interpersonal evaluations (credibility, attraction, similarity, impression management), relational definitions and development, dyadic and group interaction categories, and nonverbal and interpersonal behavior, a schema of 12 conceptually distinct dimensions is adduced: dominance-submission, intimacy affection-hostility, intensity of involvement, inclusion-exclusion, trust, depth-superficiality, emotional arousal, composure, similarity, formality, and task-social orientation.

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  • Judee K. Burgoon

  • Jerold L. Hale

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