An analysis of differences in disclosure to differential relationships



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Interpersonal relationships have been recognized as important determinants of personality development since the early years of psychology. The function of communication, both verbal and nonverbal, was treated in the writings of Mead (1934), who stated that a self was constituted by the process of influencing others in a social situation, assimilating the response aroused by the stimulus, and then reacting in turn. Mead's concept of self was similar to Cooley's (1956) "looking-glass self." Cooley theorized that an individual's self developed out of his perceptions of the reactions of others to him.

Sullivan proposed that personality is "the relatively enduring pattern of recurrent interpersonal situations which characterize a human life" (Hall & Lindzey, 1970, p. 127). Expanding upon this concept, Sullivan went on to state that behavior can be observed only in the context of interpersonal relationships (Mullahy, 1967). Beaglehole (1967) elaborated upon Sullivan's theory, proposing that since man is a social animal and lives in social environs, he is subjected to a conditioning process determined by the culture. The socialization process is embodied in tradition and is passed on from generation to generation resulting in man's becoming a socialized being.



Self-disclosure, Interpersonal relations