The interpersonal signature

  • Fournier M
  • Moskowitz D
  • Zuroff D
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Abstract

The interpersonal signature is the within-person pattern in social behavior that an individual demonstrates in response to the social behavior of others. In the present study, we sought to identify the dimensions underlying the differences between individuals in terms of the within-person structure and organization of their interpersonal signatures. Research participants collected event-contingent records of their day-to-day social interactions over a 20-day period. Participants recorded their own social behavior (dominant, agreeable, submissive, quarrelsome) in four situations defined by the perceived social behavior of their primary interaction partners (agreeable-dominant, agreeable-submissive, quarrelsome-submissive, quarrelsome-dominant). Although interpersonal signatures demonstrated a normative within-person organization that closely corresponded to the structure of the interpersonal circle, individual differences were also found. The idiographic signatures of individuals differed along two nomothetically interpretable dimensions, polarity and orthogonality, that were distinct from other dimensions of personality (the Big Five) but were related to socio-emotional adjustment (depression, self-esteem). © 2009 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Behavioral Signatures
  • Interpersonal theory
  • Social-cognitive theory
  • Within-person variability

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