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Chapter 10

PSYC 215 Chapter Notes - Chapter 10: Social Exchange Theory, Rhesus Macaque, Attachment Theory

Course Code
PSYC 215
Mark Baldwin

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Social Psychology Chapter 10 Relationships and Attraction
Methodological challenges: use longitudinal methods to examine the dynamics that
unfold over time in pre-existing relationships - self selection problems
Need to Belong - biological need to be embedded in healthy relationships
Help individuals and offspring to survive
Evolutionary basis: should be universal
If not met over long period of time will suffer
o Rhesus monkeys preferred cloth mother over wire food mother
Display fear and inappropriate sexual behaviour during adolescents
o Natural experiment with elephants (avoid self selection)
Antisocial when kept alone for ivory in tusks
Solve problem by inviting adult elephants to show baby elephant
how to behave as elephants
Communal and exchange relationships: in different contexts with different norms
Communal relationship: individuals feel a special responsibility for one another
and often expect their relationship to be long term, give and receive according to
principle of need, family like sharing of identity
o Interdependent societies more likely than independent societies
o Catholics more communal than Protestants in relationship matters
Exchange relationship: trade based, feel little responsibility toward each other,
short term, giving and receiving based on equity and reciprocity
Interpersonal relationships
Most intimate relationships are somehow based on rewards: gravitated toward
whom can provide them with reward
Reward framework: to make others to like you = reward them
Social exchange theory: how people feel about relationship depends on their
assessment of its costs and rewards, people motivated to maximize their own
feelings of satisfaction, more rewards less costs
o Comparison level: outcomes people think they deserve or expect to get
out of a relationship
o Comparison level for alternatives: outcomes people think they can get
out of alternative relationships
o Equity theory: benefits should equal the effort both people put in the
relationship (differ across culture not always equal distribution)
Attachment styles
Attachment theory: evolutionary approach to human behaviour, our early
attachment with our parents and other caregivers shape our relationships for the
rest of our lives
Internal working models of babies and how relationships function based on their
parents' availability and responsiveness to them

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Attachment patterns according to separation and reunion behaviours with
caregiver using Strange Situation that would make infant distressed
o Secure = when caregiver respond to distressed infant
o Anxious ambivalent = when irregular response to distressed infant
o Avoidant = when rejecting the infant
Same with relationships between adults
o Secure = easy to get close and depend, don't often worry about abandon
o Anxious ambivalent = others reluctant to get as close as wanted, worry
o Avoidant = uncomfortable being close, difficult to trust or depend
o Anxiety dimension of attachment: amount of fear a person feels about
rejection and abandonment with close relationships
o Avoidance dimension attachment: whether person is comfortable with
intimacy and dependence in primary adult relationships or find them
Working models of attachment established early and relatively stable throughout
life time according to longitudinal research
Across relationships: more than 50% participants characterized as having all three
attachment styles across 10 relationships, develop working models that are
specific to particular close other
o Different attachment style can be momentarily primed or activated
Across time, one relationship can vary in attachment style
Mostly apply to western culture, other can be just interdependent not insecurely
o Ex: secure attachment in independent cultures to be greater autonomy than
secure attachment in interdependent cultures
Proximity: lead to friendship because facilitates chances of encounter
Functional distance: the influence of an architectural layout to encourage or
discourage contact between people
Largest effects of proximity found between people of different races, ages or
social classes - willing for diversity only when those "fell in their laps"
Mere exposure effect: the more you are exposed to something, the more you tend
to like it, maybe because easier to perceive and cognitively process familiar
stimuli, maybe classical conditioning of event as non negative therefore safe
Beauty based on perceptual and cognitive fluency or how easily information can
be processed
Similarities in couples: strongest in demographic characteristics (social class,
religion) and physical characteristics (physical attractiveness, health), weaker for
personality characteristics (leadership, sensitivity)
o Compensate for dissimilarity on one dimension with greater similarity on
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