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Social Penetration Theory

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on 4 February 2016

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Transcript of Social Penetration Theory

Irwin Altman
Professor of Psychology
University of Utah
Objective
Alive


Dalmas Taylor
Provost/Professor
Lincoln University (Pennsylvania)
Deceased

The Theorists...
Social Penetration
: Process of developing deeper intimacy with another person through mutual self-disclosure and other forms of vulnerability.
What is Social Penetration?
What went wrong here?
Law of Reciprocity
: Open in one person leads to openness in another. "You tell me your dream, and I'll tell you mine."

Social Exchange
: Relationships behaviors regulated by both parties evaluating the rewards and costs of interacting with one another (WII FM). Outcome= rewards- costs.

Minimax Principle
: Max benefits, minimize costs.
How and Why do we Dig Deeper?
Social Disclosure as a Mechanism
Irwin Altman & Dalmas Taylor
Social Penetration Theory
Depth and Breadth
Personality Structure
Me
You
You
65%
2%
19%
14%
Comparison Level of Alternatives:
Is the grass greener? (Best available outcome in other relationships?)
"Would my relationship payoffs be better with another person?" "What is the bottom line in my present relationship?
How does relational closeness develop?

Relationships proceed in a "gradual and orderly fashion from
superficial to intimate levels of exchange as a function of both immediate and forecast outcomes."
Critique:
Prediction:
1.) Does revealing private info always lead to more self-disclosure?
2.) Can we forecast future outcomes?
3.) Are we always driven by a self-centered concern for personal game?
Full transcript