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Talk in Developing Relationships

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  1. Talk in Developing Relationships • Talk to avoid awkwardness • Talk for its own sake • Talk to gather information • Talk as audition for relationship • Talk to accomplish tasks • Others?

  2. Characteristics of Good/Bad Experimenting Conversations • Mutual involvement • Find integrating topics • Finding each other interesting: Boring people seen as: passive, serious, egocentric, banal, preoccupied, low affect • Others?

  3. Self-Presentation or Impression Management • Goals to be seen as: • Likeable = Ingratiation • Competent = Self-Promotion • Worthy (honest, integrity, moral, etc.) = Exemplification • Helpless = Supplication • Dangerous or Powerful = Intimidation • Others? • From Jones, E. E., & Pittman, T. S. (982). Toward a general theory of strategic self-presentation. In J. Suls (Ed.), Psychological perspectives on the self (pp. 231-236). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.

  4. Anticipating Things Going Wrong: Disclaimers • Hedging – “I could be wrong, but…” • Credentialing – “Some of my best friends are Catholics, but….” • Sin license – “I never do things like this, but…” • Cognitive disclaimer – “I know this sounds crazy, but….” • Appeal for suspended judgment – “Before you get angry, let me explain….” From Hewitt & Stokes cited in Knapp & Vangelisti, p. 181

  5. Controlling Impressions When Things Do Go Wrong: Excuses, and Justifications • Apologies or Concessions express regret or provide an explanation • Excuses minimize responsibility • Unintentional, uncontrollable, mitigating circumstances, other to blame, I didn’t do it • Justifications give reasons • No real harm done, benefits offset harm, victim deserved it, discrediting accusers, other obligations supersede consequences • Redressive Actions try to make amends From Metts, S., & Grohskopf, E. (2003). Impression management: Goals, strategies, and skills. In J. O. Greene & B. R. Burleson (Eds.), Handbook of communication and social interaction skills (pp. 357-399). Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.