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Title:Cross-Sex Friendships in a Changing Society: A Comparative Analysis of Cross-Sex Friendships, Same-Sex Friendships, and Romantic Relationships
Author(s):Monsour, William Michael, III
Department / Program:Speech Communication
Discipline:Speech Communication
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Speech Communication
Abstract:In this dissertation I attempt to identify the antecedent conditions predicting the frequency of cross-sex friendships, to investigate the functions those friendships serve, and to determine in what ways the communication of cross-sex friends might be differentiated from that of same-sex friends and romantic partners.
An eleven page survey and the videotaped conversations of 120 dyads were used. An individual's romantic status predicted the frequency of cross-sex friends for females but not males--whereas the frequency of interaction with opposite-sex others predicted the frequency of cross-sex friends for males but not females. The need for opposite-sex companionship was positively correlated with the frequency of cross-sex friendships for females; for males the need to be expressive and the need for sexual gratification was positively correlated with the number of cross-sex friends.
Individuals placed more than a moderate degree of importance on the functions served by cross-sex friends, and support was also garnered for the proposition that in many ways these functions are unique and cannot be met by same-sex friends or romantic partners.
There was no significant difference in the intimacy displayed and reported on by males and females in cross-sex friendships, nor were there significant differences in attempts to control conversations, or actual control of those conversations. Though male same-sex friends were rated as being less intimate than the other dyads by the coders, when reporting on self-disclosures and emotional expressiveness they indicated being just as intimate as were males in cross-sex friendships, but less so than females in same-sex friendships, and males and females in romantic relationships.
Females in same-sex friendships reported self-disclosing more and being more emotionally expressive than all other individuals, and the ratings of intimacy by the coders verified their self-reports. Though romantic partners reported self-disclosing more and being more expressive than all other individuals in all other dyads (except for females in same-sex friendships), they were rated by the observers of the videotapes as lower in intimacy than the cross-sex friends and female same-sex friends, and higher than the male same-sex friends.
Issue Date:1988
Description:365 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1988.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8908784
Date Available in IDEALS:2015-05-13
Date Deposited:1988

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